Monday, January 04, 2016

What Did You Do with Your Vacation?

Before vacation I posted a challenge to do one thing a day, and I posted some suggestions. I planned to do seven of them myself. In fact, I'd hoped for all of them. Things didn't go as planned. For some reason the photos aren't aligning right on this post, but you'll get the point anyway.

Here's how we did with the list:


  • Read one book. We are reading an easy version of Peter Pan that we can read in one sitting. Then we are going to watch the movie. We read the book, but all the library copies of the movie were checked out and it's not on Netflix instant play.



  • Do one puzzle.This is a puzzle that was my mom's in the 1930s. It does not have interlocking  pieces, so it's very easy to knock it all apart. Anyone seen these puzzles before? We did this puzzle, but it was mostly Rick and I, so we've started a regular interlocking puzzle. It's a bit challenging, so we aren't done yet.





  • Memorize one verse. Our verses for 2015 are Matthew 5:14-16.  We memorized them last January. We decided that our verse for this coming year is Micah 6:8 No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. About half of us have the verse memorized.


  • Walk one mile. We are going to walk at the park at least once next week. With all that happened, we only made it twice.


  • Volunteer one hour. We are going to go to the shelter where we got Travis and Sasha and take some of the doggies on a field trip to a park. In the summer we take them kayaking. It's almost an hour away, so we don't get there very often. This didn't happen. We were supposed to go Thursday, but Jessica was sick so I sat with her that day.


  • Try one new recipe. Haven't decided on this yet. Jasmine helped me make cheesecake from an old family recipe. She might have helped me with it a long time ago, but it's the closest we came to a new recipe. The cheesecake was gone before I realized we didn't have a picture. The only one I have is of her whipping the chilled condensed milk. (I accidentally partly froze it, but it seemed to make it whip better).


Cheese Cake
8 oz cream cheese                    large pack lemon jello
1 c sugar                                   1 c boiling water
1 tsp vanilla                              12 oz can of condensed milk
 2 or 3 Graham cracker Ready Crusts or individual crusts. 
 Blueberry or cherry pie filling as a topping

Chill condensed milk. Combine boiling water with dry jello mix.
Set aside. Mix sugar, cream cheese and vanilla. Add jello mixture
and whip. Set aside. Whip condensed milk. Combine with cheese
and jello mixture. Whip. Spoon into crust. Chill three hours.



  • Make one craft. We have been doing loads of craft that you've seen in the past posts on this blog. We will be starting projects for our "Week of Kindness" (or maybe two weeks) we'll be doing in February. We worked on sanding and painting blocks  for a craft, but didn't finish it. We did do several splatter paint jars, made almond bark pretzels and cupcake snowmen (which I'll be posting about next).







  • Set one family goal. We decided that we are going to try and go tubing in NC this summer. We are planning the date, finances and travel plans. We didn't work more on this

  • Write one letter. Haven't decided on this yet. The kids didn't get this done.
  • Play one game. We've been playing Escape, a new Wii game Ty has, and Skip It. Yesterday Jasmine managed to hit a Christmas ornament and send it flying. We played more Skip It and the kids played Wii Outdoor Challenge with Ty and also a new game he bought.



  • Draw one picture (and give it to someone). The twins are practicing their drawing and then are going to draw a picture to send to their birth father in Haiti when a friend goes down there. The kids worked on their pictures several days. Now they are going to do one with watercolor pencils.

  • Start one new tradition. If you want an easy one, light sparklers on New Year's Eve and talk about how Jesus is the Light of the World, and have each child share how he/she will be a light in the coming year. Our new tradition this year will be the Polar Bear plunge about an hour away. It means getting up at 6 a.m. on Jan 1. We planned to do this with Jessica and her new baby, but with them both in the hospital, and different hospitals at that, we didn't go. We shared our sparkler tradition with another family. 

  • Clean out closets and storage areas and donate one bag of stuff you no longer need to a thrift shop or local charity. We have been doing this gradually for the last few weeks.
What took up our time was things not on the list. And those fall into two categories, poor behavior (which I'm not going to talk about other than say that it ruined a lot of our plans) and baby drama. (If you read my Cassel Crew blog, you've already read a longer version of this)

Baby drama started early Tuesday when Jessica went in to be induced. Things did not go as planned. She made very slow progress, ended up with an epidural in hopes it would relax her enough to dilate. She was stuck at 7-8 cm and had a C section just after midnight. The baby was born on the 30th at 12:13 a.m. (14 minutes too late for daddy's birthday). 

Unfortunately, the baby started breathing too soon and swallowed fluid. She wasn't breathing (or at least well) and had to be hooked to a CPAP and transported to a nearby hospital that has a NICU unit. Jessica remained at the original hospital. 

Jessica was finally released on Friday and went to be with baby River in NICU. River was released on Saturday. 

Jasmine and I went to the hospital at 10 a.m. Tuesday. She left after 1:00 a.m. Wed, and I left about 3:30 a.m. Went to bed at 5 and got up at 7 to go to both hospitals, and that's how it was until Saturday.

But now Jessica and the baby are settled in at home and doing well.



What did you do with your vacation?

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