Sunday, August 30, 2009

Week 1...

So, just wanted to let you all know that the family has survived week 1 of Miles Master's program, and that we are ready to dive into week 2! :-) What have we learned through this first week of classes? We have learned that we have much to learn...

Miles did an absolutely incredible job staying at school and focusing on studying! We are not naive enough to have thought that any real studying was going to be accomplished here at home, and a brief test run Tuesday morning, proved our Miles is at school ALL day long! However, he also tore himself away from his studies early a couple of night to come home and let me get some grocery shopping done, AND I even got to attend a baby shower completely kid-free! What an awesome man! He and the other members of his "track" (the group of students he'll complete the program with) have formed a study group, have divided up the reading, and have scheduled routine review groups...everyday 40 mins before class! I think that is awesome to be sooo organized this early in the game...and I know all about the power of the study group, saved me through more than one course in my degree seeking days! :-) This week we will be adding in some gym time for both him AND I, and he is going to make an effort to be home for dinner a couple of nights a week... We are giving ourselves a good month to get a feel for what he will really need to put into this program, and what I will really need at home...and we are most confident that it will all fall into place...eventually! :-)

As a humorous side story: Monday night, the first night Miles wasn't home to put the girls to bed, I had put the girls down, and was in the office working on lesson plans...when I hear mournful singing coming from our Maddie (Maddie loves to sing songs of woe...pitiful tunes that tell of the trials of her life! Many times Miles has had to "outlaw" sad songs in our little kingdom!) and as this is a common occurence, I wasn't really paying attention. However, I eventually realized that our little Maddie was singing "I'm so glad when Daddy comes home..." as she sobbed and sobbed and sobbed. Me and my breaking heart went in to comfort Maddie and let her know that Daddy would come home, and that he loved her and missed her, too. I asked her if she would like me to have Daddy come in and give her a hug and kiss...even if she was asleep. That was an acceptable solution, and Maddie quickly quieted down and drifted off to sleep. When I told Miles, he took his breaking heart over to our box of paper and crayons...quickly tore off a couple of sheets and wrote a quick note to both Maddie and Emma. Then he slipped into their room, gave them hugs and kisses, and left the notes under their pillows! OH! Much excitement the next morning...

Well, as these stories often go...the note quickly became a hot item! They requested a note each fact, Miles came home early on Wednesday, and Emma threw a fit because she wanted a note...and since Dad was home to put her in bed that meant no note! Seriously...sometimes you just can't win! :-)

School with the girls is going great. We waaaay overplanned our week this week...we had lots of fun playing with friends, and had a couple of doctor's appointments and a couple of church activities...and the next thing I knew it was Saturday night, and we'd covered less than 1/2 what I had planned for the week. SOOOO...another lesson learned this week! School is the priority...just because we are home, doesn't mean we are available! Lesson learned! :-) Maddie started learning about Egypt this week in history, and has decided history is her favorite subject! :-) She also learned a bit about whales in science...her favorite things about whales...their songs (which she does an excellent imitation of!) AND killer whales! No joke! She watched several videos of YouTube of killer whales chomping on their prey, and she thought that was really cool! My Maddie has a violent streak? :-)

Emma has really stepped up over the last week, and is an incredible Mommy's helper! She LOVES to be tasked with playing with Ellie, or picking up the toys, or even cleaning the guest bathroom! :-) She is also a BIG help in the kitchen...readily available to help stir, or put an ingredient is really nice to have such a dependable 4 year old! :-) She is doing really well on her math, and has enjoyed sitting in on a couple of Maddie's history lessons. She struggled a bit with reading this week, but she made it through all of her lessons, and I am really proud of her for that!

As for Ellie...she is Ellie! She is such a great baby, not fussy, unless you need her to NOT be eating paper, chewing on power cords, crawling down the stairs, etc. She must be in constant motion...even while "holding" her, she is's not so much holding Ellie, as juggling Ellie! :-) She did wake up Monday morning and decide that she was ready to eat that food out of the jar that Mom had been trying to push through her mouth for the last month or so! Now, she is plowing through at least 3 jars a day...yipee!!!! That means that Mom might be able to pass off the feeding of Ellie to someone else...OH...sweet freedom! :-) She is still cutting she can get cranky when the teething tablets wear off, but keep them in her system and she is a gem! :-) I love this kid!

Me? Well...I am tired but content! I am amazed at how well this week played out...and while it was difficult, it was doable! I am blessed with wonderful friends and family who have been incredibly supportive, and I am truly grateful to be able to be a part of this awesome opportunity in Miles' life! It is such a blessing to be able to see your husband truly get energized by what he is doing to earn the I am ready to take on week #2...

Stay tuned! :-) We love and miss you all!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

No joke!

This past week was a BIG one at the Maschger house. Miles started his Master's program, and the girls and I restarted school. I spent the weekend before prepping the "school room" and the girls had new school supplies, and I was ready to roll...until Sunday night/early Monday morning! Both Maddie and Ellie were up on and off ALL night...I didn't really think much of it because Ellie is 7 mos old and Sunday's always mess up the sleep schedule...and Maddie has had a hard time sleeping since birth.

Monday morning, after less than 3 hours of sleep, I was in the school room doing last minute stuff before I got the girls up, when I hear Maddie start to whimper and cry. SIGH! In I go to see what is the DRAMA I approach her, I can feel the heat radiating off of her body. Sure enough, Maddie was running a HIGH fever...what a great first day! Miles was gone at school orientation, so it was just one point I had Maddie in the bathroom throwing up, and Emma in time-out and Ellie screaming in her walker in the kitchen. Welcome Back! :-)

Emma was sick Wednesday and Ellie succumbed on Thursday, and hers coincided with the cutting of three more teeth! was a very long week for me! However, one of the perks of homeschooling, was that I could squeeze in lessons at every chance I got. By the end of the week, we had completed all of our work for the week...just behind one math lesson...I can take that! The greatest news...Emma read her first two readers this week!!! She did soooo great...when she came up to a word she didn't know, she took the time to sound it out! It was a great moment, and she is loving being a BIG girl!!!

Miles has been wandering around the house in a state of shock. He spent his first week on campus from 7am until was a LONG week! However, as we poured over his syllabuses for his first quarter, we have realized that this last week was a BREEZE! By Wednesday, 9am, my husband has to read literally hundreds of pages and write a Thursday, hundreds more...the reading is insane! On top of this, there is the work on his thesis which has to begin almost immediately...

Let me sum it up this way...Miles was told in one of his meetings this week that most Master's programs require 36 hours of course work and a thesis, and give the students 18-24 months to complete...Miles will have 44 credit hours, a thesis and has been given 9 months to complete the program!!!!

We sat the girls down last night and explained that Daddy was going to be insanely busy, and that they weren't going to see him...pretty much Monday thru Saturday. Maddie innocently asked, "Can he eat Saturday breakfast with us?" Miles quickly agreed that he could head to the library a bit later on Saturdays so that he could have breakfast with the family...and then there is always Sundays...

So, that's about it from here...the girls are back in school, Miles is back in school and I am trying to keep up with it all!

We love and miss you all!

Sunday, August 16, 2009


Anyone still there?

I have about 10 minutes before I need to move on to the next item on my to-do list for this crazy Sabbath here I am!

Quickly bringing you up to speed...we are pretty much settled into our new home. All the boxes are unpacked, furniture in its place, etc. Still have pictures to hang on the walls, and a garage to organize...but I figure we'll get that all in place right about the time we move! We are LOVING our new place...LOVING it! Miles and I spent Friday night getting our "school" room set up since we are starting school on Monday, and it is sooooo awesome to have a school room! We have a corner for reading, and word charts hung on the walls, and a place to display art work, etc. It is just awesome!

Ellie is growing insanely fast! She is cruising all over the place...climbing stairs...cruising along furniture, walls, etc.! She is a baby on the move! She is even starting to put her babbles together to get out "mamamamamama" and "dadadadadada" and she almost always says the right string of babbles to the right person! :-) Our frustration with her lack of interest in eating was alleviated when Nana (who visited with Papa last week) discovered that all Ellie wants is big people food! Go figure! She isn't interested in mashed up peas...she wants the real thing...and eats them just fine! :-) So, we have moved on to finger foods, completely skipping over everything else...sigh...

Emma and Maddie are gearing up for school to start, and sad that Daddy isn't going to be home to snuggle with in the morning. Miles has had the last 6 weeks off, and the girls have LOVED having Daddy's going to be an adjustment for us all!

Miles starts his Master's program tomorrow. He is all excitement, stress, nervous, overwhelmed...just a ball of nerves. Deep breath...because ready or not here it comes! He ran a 10K yesterday...even though he hasn't done ANY working out for the last 6 weeks...he completed the run in 53 mins...makes me sick! :-)

I am looking forward to starting up school with the girls, settling back into a routine...I am a little concerned with how I am going to keep up with the whole "cleaning" of the nice things about our much smaller house, was that it didn't take too long to clean. With this move I easily tripled my square footage...not that I am complaining! :-)

Quick story:

In the van, on the way to Wal-Mart to pick up some needed school supplies (we are going to be building a model of the Nile River...sounds awesome, huh?!) and Miles and I are discussing politics, or the degradation of society...or is that the same thing? Anyway, from the back seat Maddie asks,

MADDIE: Mom, do aliens have brains?
MOM: Well, Maddie, as no one has ever "caught" an alien to check to see, then we really don't know whether they do or they don't.
MADDIE: Well, Gonzo doesn't have a brain, and he is an alien, so I think that aliens don't have brains.

Once you bring Muppets into a conversation, there really is no comeback! :-)

OK...I am off to pack up our church bagSSSSS, and marshall the troops for Sunday readiness!

We love and miss you all!