Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Elijah Seth Hester

Welcome to the world, Elijah Seth Hester.
Elijah means "my God is Yahweh"
Seth means "appointed".
Oh baby boy. You were certainly appointed by Yahweh, and we pray earnestly that your heart will forever belong to the King and His kingdom!
Born at home on Jan. 26th, 2015 at 9:34pm.
8lbs., 4oz.
Loved and adored by all his brothers and sisters.....
We are in awe of God's handiwork, and so thankful to welcome him!!!!



Wednesday, January 14, 2015

First test!!

Judah finished his first Sing, Spell book and test!!! Yay!!!��������

Friday, December 26, 2014

Things that take work....

"Hobbit Stew" served atop mashed po-Tay-toes
Lembas Bread (you know....the bread of the elves)

I gotta tell you....this took a lot of work. But isn't it *interesting* how most things of value do take work?
Making memories....that's what I hope it was all about. When my kids look back at some of these stories that have shaped them, and our family....maybe they will remember with a smile their crazy, pregnant mother buzzing about in the kitchen just to put the finishing touches on the Lembas bread. They have been talking about Hobbit Feast Day ever since I told them about it. And I planned so much food that it wouldn't fit in one day, and will have to carry over to tomorrow.

It is a lot of work. But it is worth it. I don't think any of us Hesters will ever think of The Lord of the Rings in quite the same way again. ;-)

And, here is this evening's movie clip:
Samwise Gamgee:....there were plenty of opportunities for those folk to turn back, but they didn't....because they were holding onto something.
Frodo: What are we holding on to, Sam?
Samwise: They believed that there was good in this world, and that it's worth fighting for!

For the True King! And for the Kingdom!
"May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10 NLT)



"Hobbit Feast Day"

Shire French toast
Shire berries
Bilbo's roast beast (aka Ham)
The Golden Ring


Caleb started it all by deciding to re-read The Lord of the Rings. Then Noah decided to read (and finish!) The Hobbit.  I thought we were sort of out of that phase, having read the Hobbit as a read aloud last year. But, as I was meal planning for the week and the holidays, I couldn't resist planning for a Hobbit Feast Day, seeing as how the interest has been renewed. 
So. Here is our first meal on Hobbit Day, here in the Hester house. Only Emma and Caleb have seen the first two Lord of the Rings movies, but in honor of our feast day, we played the following clip for our breakfast meal.

Frodo and Gandalf are talking...
Frodo: It's a pity Bilbo didn't kill him (Gollum) when he had the chance.
Gandalf: Pity! Yes, it was pity that kept Bilbo from killing him. There are those who deserve death, but receive life, and those who deserve life but receive death. Can you give it???

And then:
Frodo: I wish the ring had never come to me.  I wish none of this had ever happened.
Gandalf: Yes, as does all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide.  All we can decide is how to use the time that we've been given.


Well. Off to work on Hobbit Stew!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Word Up!!!


Okay, so the makers of Visual Latin, a high school Latin curriculum, have outdone themselves with this fun approach to learning Latin and Greek roots.
My big two love Visual Latin, and Caleb has almost finished his first "year", along with reading Lingua Latina.

Anyhow. Noah had finished his current Latin work, and was so excited to move on to something new. I really didn't feel that Visual Latin was the right "next step" for him, despite all the fun his brother and sister were having with it.

Enter: Word Up! The Vocabulary Show!!! A fun little video introduces 10 new words with the Latin root and 10 new words with the Greek root.  This is such a fun way to bridge the gap, and increase Noah's vocabulary, without being too rigorous academically. After the video, there are FREE online activities including flashcards, games, and tests.

Right now, it's only $10!! And with the online content, each group of words can easily last a week (or two!!).

The first root was the word for water: Aqua in Latin and Hydra in Greek.
They learn all about aqueduct, aqueous, aqualung, aquatint....hydrate, hydrant....well. You get the point.

Today, Judah (age 3) informed me:
"Mom, Ezra and I are going to jump on the trampoline. But if it starts raining aqua....then we will come inside."



Monday, November 10, 2014

Can barely contain my excitement...

If you know me, you know that I research things. I have a joke with my husband where I tell him, "I know things." Usually, this is because he is surprised that I know something that seems fairly random for a...ahem...middle-aged mother of (soon-to-be) seven.

I have known for some time that I wanted to use this curriculum. I just wasn't sure when or how.
Summit ministries offers some fantastic resources, both by way of curriculum, and conferences, as well as a "semester" for high school graduates before going on to college. Their focus and heart is worldview.

As I prayed over Emma and Caleb for this year, the one thing I was most burdened for them was: worldview.  But there was still the issues of finances, timing, and how to fit this in with all the other stuff!!!!

Needless to say, the day has come. Today is their first day of the Lightbearers curriculum. It is intense. (They say an hour a day for 180 days). I don't know how accurate that is, because I'm just starting out.  But I am so excited to see how God will use this tool to grow our thinking and evaluating of what is around us.  I love thinking deeply about my God....and I am excited to see what the next 180 days will hold for us.��

PS-they have to do a pre-test today, where they answer yes or no to questions like, "If I obey God, things will pretty much go well for me."
Yikes. I'm so glad they get to start thinking about this stuff now!!

Friday, November 07, 2014

Just the beginning...

This kid came in early this morning and asked to snuggle. (This isn't his usual). Then, he quietly announced, "I finished the Bible today."  Caleb started in Genesis and read all the way through.  He says it has taken him two years and two months-which means he started just after turning eight. He is ten now. 

I am amazed. Daddy smiled and asked him, "So, was it good?" ;-p
I asked what his favorite book was and he said "Revelation."  Wow. 
I don't really have the words to convey all that I'm thinking and feeling. I'm so proud of this young man! And because of his example, his brothers (Noah, age 8, and Ezra, age 6) have started reading in Genesis.
One of the most amazing things about God's Word is that it is alive. It changes us. We can read it over and over and it never stops flowing the lifeblood of our God into us, and washing the blood of Christ over us. It never stops changing us, but is always useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

So. As I told my sweet boy this morning, this is only the beginning..... :-)

"It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it."
Isaiah 55:11

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Thankful....


Most days....life is crazy. You find yourself just wanting to take a breath for a moment. Life, these days, is just....FULL. For everyone. The hustle and bustle. The classes and the appointments and the activities that we all think are so necessary.
It's easy to miss the *holiness* of each moment.  Every once in a while, God gives us this beautiful sense that stops us in our very tracks and reminds us to "take off our sandals", because the ground we are on is holy. Something is happening that we can't always taste or see or measure. 
Little tiny fingers are learning to fold in reference. Little tiny mouths are learning to say "Amen"....and there is an awareness that their childlike declaration of "let it be so" carries heavenly weight. The voices of children are lifting up simple prayers that are more profound than you thought possible.  Sweet boys give up play time to push little sisters on swings.
Things are happening.
I don't want to miss it. So today, I won't hustle and bustle. Today, I will choose to take off my sandals and bask in the holiness of the moment. Today, I am asking God to help me look not to the things that are seen (which include messes and squabbles), but on the things that are unseen.  BECAUSE..."the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal." (2 Cor. 4:18)

Oh Lord! Give me eyes to see what is eternal today. My soul craves what is unseen...that holy ground where the mountains are moved by the smallest seeds of faith. There are so many things I get wrong. But today, I'm digging my toes into this holy ground. I'm slowing down. I'm seeing....with my heart. And I'm thankful.....