Archive for August, 2013

30
Aug
13

after school!

The first day of school is under their belt and they all came home to a yummy after school treat!

4th grade, 2nd grade, and kindergarten cookies! Congratulations on your first day back kiddos!

27
Aug
13

new beginnings!

Well, after 9 years…the day has finally come!  All three of my babies are now in elementary school!  It is pretty surreal, and *slightly* exciting!  Can you tell?!?  😉

So maybe they’re not too thrilled…but mommy is!

Rilyn started fourth grade today. She came into our room this morning at 5:30 a.m. all dressed and ready to go! I sent her back to bed, but she couldn’t sleep because she was so excited!


She has only two teachers this year (last year she had three!)

Her home room teacher! I tried my best to crop out the t.u. flag on the wall behind her! 🙂


Ella started 2nd grade today. Her highlight is having the same teacher as she did in 1st grade. We LOVE Mrs. Stein!


Asher started kindergarten today. He was so nervous and wouldn’t even eat his special breakfast this morning-a poptart! As soon as he got into his classroom though, his nerves settled and he told me he was hungry! :/


Have a great day!

16
Aug
13

Preparing Your Daughter for Every Woman’s Battle

For the past 3 years, I have spent an evening in August having “the talk” with each of my daughters.  It is not easy.

I was talking to an older couple last month, and we were talking about the generational gaps.  It was acceptable in their generation to keep things hidden, especially things that were not socially polite to talk about such as sex.  In church back then, you just didn’t talk about your struggles out loud either.  If you went to church, you were probably pretty holy, but no one was going to ask you about it, just in case you weren’t.  And you certainly didn’t have social media to share things!

But my children live in a generation which I would describe as the “authentic” generation.  Everyone, everywhere is okay with talking about who they are, whether that be heterosexual, bi, homosexual, Republican, Liberal, prolife, prochoice, etc.  Even Christians now feel the freedom to confess sins and repent to others on their blogs, in church programs, etc.  Facebook is filled with statuses of how it’s okay to be different, this is who I am, love me for me!

While I believe it is good to be authentic, and not hide struggles, this creates a dilemma for us as Christian parents of young children.  I believe we MUST tell our children the Biblical view of sex and marriage at young ages.  I don’t care if you never let your child step foot in a public school, they will see/hear people of all kinds doing things you will not approve of on the TV/movie screen, commercials, on the sidewalk, at the neighborhood pool, social media, their older cousin’s house, billboards, and…brace yourself…CHURCH.  And parents, I want broken people (which is all of us!) to feel welcome at church no matter how much of an outcast they may feel they are.  After all, in Luke 5 it says,

29 Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. 30 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

31 Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

So, starting at age 5, we age appropriately share the Biblical view of sex and marriage to our children.  I know, you’re thinking, “Really?  5 years old!” But we must prepare our kids for the battles that lie ahead in this world.  And our kids are experiencing things that we have NEVER experienced as children because we didn’t have the internet.  Don’t be naiive parents to what your children will see and hear.

This year, I decided to get a new book to help with my oldest daughter, age 9.  She HATES talking about sex.  And although What’s the Big Deal?: Why God Cares About Sex (God’s Design for Sex) is good, I need something that I can read to her, that is written for her (i.e. written FOR girls) since she feels SO awkward about talking with me about “it.”   Book 3 in God’s Design for Sex series is written in a question/answer type format and does not naturally flow conversationally in my opinion.  It still is a good book to discuss with your 9-11 year old, but like I said earlier, for a child who doesn’t even want to look at you during “this” conversation, it just isn’t the right book for the job.

Preparing Your Daughter for Every Woman’s Battle: Creative Conversations About Sexual and Emotional Integrity (The Every Man Series) has been a great resource for me to use when talking with my almost fourth grader.   First off, I would recommend this book for girls ages 9 and up.  I also bought my daughter a journal before we started so we could do the activities at the end of each chapter in the journal.  The first half of the book is written just for mom to read alone.  The mom section convinces you that it is good to read this to your daughter BEFORE she starts puberty.

After I read that, I skimmed the back half of the book and saw there was 16 mini chapters for me to read with my daughter.  Every chapter is about a new topic:  getting curves, starting your period, dating, sex, sex before marriage, friends, etc.  I started doing a chapter a day with her during the later half of July.  Each chapter took about 30 minutes from start to finish.  What I really liked about these chapters was at the end of each one, there was a short activity to do with my daughter.  She got out her new journal I bought her and a Bible, and together we did the activity and then I wrote a sentence that I wanted her to remember for that day.  Example:  After we read about getting curves, she had to draw different fruits on a page of her journal.  We then talked about if a banana could ever be a pear or an apple could ever be a banana, etc.  Obviously the answer is no, each fruit is made with unique curves.  We are to be happy with the bodies God gave us!  So I wrote on the bottom of her page:  “Thank you God for creating Rilyn in Your image!”  My hope is that she can look back over this journal throughout the school year and remember everything we discussed, (because she is not one to comfortably talk to me about these things, although my prayer is that she will one day.) Warning, this book is very graphic about sex.  It feels very unnatural to read these things to an innocent 9 year old, but 1.) I have to remind myself no one is innocent and 2.)  I want her to hear these things from me first, not on the playground at school.  My prayer for her is that knowing all these things now, she will be a friend of influence rather than be influenced by peers at school.  (And parents, just tell your daughter not to discuss the things in this book with others unless the topic comes up!)  🙂

me and my girls!

15
Aug
13

I love sharpening pencils! (and here is why!)

Do I really LOVE sharpening pencils?  Nope.  I mean, really, is there anyone that truly loves to stand around an annoyingly, loud machine and grind pencil after pencil?  (Besides students who just don’t want to do their class work, and happen to “break” their pencil, and therefore disrupt the entire class.)  🙂

But I LOVE to sharpen them, you know why?  Because I’m serving the ones who invest 7 hours a day in my children.  There are perks to being a teacher, (summers off!), but sharpening pencils is NOT one of them.  It’s a necessary evil, and I would rather bless my kid’s teachers with the time they would of had to use after school sharpening pencils, to browse Pinterest, or read a good book-(whatever helps them relax!)

Service is not without sacrifice, and if  “sacrificing” means sharpening hundreds of pencils every month, that is a small price to pay for all the work my kid’s teachers do to pour into their lives each day!

Being intentional with my children’s teachers is something I’m passionate about.  I want them to know that I’m intentional in sending them to public school.  This is not the easy way out for our family, this is the way God has willed for our family, and for us, public school requires even more intentionality.

School starts August 27th.  This past week I learned who our kids teachers were, (because I went to a PTO meeting-again-intentionality), and I e-mailed them this:

Dear _______ ,  We are so excited that _____ has you as a teacher this year!  He/She is super excited to be back in school.  We want you to know that we are here to support you and help you this year.  We would love to volunteer in your classroom or whatever else you need, just let us know.  We would be happy to help you with projects or field trips as well.  We want to support you in your efforts this year as you teach our children each day!

We also want you to know that we will be praying for you as you give yourself to our kids and all their classmates each day of the school year.  We are thankful for all you do and know that teaching is not an easy job, so we commit to praying for you throughout the year.

We also want to be a blessing to you in any way that we can.  If you could answer these questions for me sometime this week I would appreciate it.

  1. What magazine do you love that you don’t currently subscribe to?
  2. What are your favorite breakfast drinks?
  3. What are your favorite snack items?
  4. If you could get any breakfast on your way to school what would it be?
  5. Do you have any hobbies?
  6. Do you need any craft items from our house?  Toilet paper rolls?  Old magazines?  Buttons?  Fabric scraps?
  7. What is your favorite restaurant?
  8. What is your favorite drink from Sonic?
  9. Do you enjoy reading?  If so, what kind of books?
  10. What is your favorite splurge?

All their teachers have e-mailed me back already, and because of that, I now have small ways that I can bless them throughout the year, and I was able to make “Back to school” baskets with some of their favorites that my kids can bring them on their first day!

back to school baskets!

On each note, I typed up this:
Welcome Back to School!
Paper Clips: To help you hold everything together this year!
Goldfish: We hope this year will be O’fish-ally the best year!
Notepad: A note to say we think you are the best!
Pens: Thank you for helping our child write the future!
Extra gum: You are an extra special teacher!
Mints: I’m glad you were “mint” to be my teacher!
(Favorite candy/drink): We’re looking forward to a “sweet” year with you!
Love,
The Paquettes

*I’m not a big “let’s spend hours making cute stuff for gifts” type person.  If you’re like me, take heart!  Teachers love gift cards best!  I know this because I used to be a teacher!  🙂

15
Aug
13

lake day!

James and I had our 2nd annual lake day with friends!  We got to wake board, water ski, and tube plus eat a yummy lunch at Hula Hut- all without kids!  It was a great summer Saturday enjoying good company and fun water activities!







14
Aug
13

Six Flags Fiesta Texas!

Last week our family headed to Six Flags Fiesta Texas with some friends!  The high that day was 106 degrees so we were in for a *treat*!  Because of the heat, the crowds weren’t all that bad, plus there was a water park, so we had a great day and stayed from opening to closing!  Asher and Rilyn LOVE rollar coasters, Ella does not, it makes for an interesting day.  🙂


This is the kiddie coaster, which Ella still will not ride! Asher and his best friend, Caden, loved it though!

Ella did love the kiddie swings though, and my best friend went on them with her first.

my turn with my sweetie!

This coaster was one of the few that Asher could ride. This one was called Pandemonium! Do you see Asher sitting next to me?

daddy and Asher!

We let the kids play a booth because “everyone wins”!

Here is Rilyn and James on the adult swings! Can you see her waving at me?

This is how Asher feels about slow rides. 🙂

James and Rilyn went on this spinning ride!

Bumper Cars! Ella is sticking her tongue out at Rilyn behind her! Catch me if you can!

Rilyn riding with Blair, Jen’s sister.

Asher loved the bumper cars!

08
Aug
13

Montana!

Our last trip this summer was to Whitefish, Montana where we enjoyed a week long retreat with our church.  We took numerous trips to Glacier National Park where the scenery was so amazing!

We took the red bus tour around the park. The top rolls away so you can enjoy the scenery and learn about the park!

Sitting in the red bus waiting for our tour to start!

At a few points along the way, we stopped and stood up to enjoy the breathtaking views!

They also parked in a few places to let us walk around and enjoy the fresh air!

The next day we went whitewater rafting on class 3 rapids!

Can you find James and me?

I look scared in this picture! I almost fell out of the raft once!

The next day we drove back to Glacier National Park and took a small hike at Logan’s Pass. The scenery was unreal. It felt like I was stepping into a postcard!


We saw plenty of goats along our hike too!

This guy was just standing there like he was posing for pictures!

When I saw real live park rangers wearing hats, I just HAD to get a picture!




My photography business!

August 2013
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