7 Quick Takes Friday (Vol. 5)

My lack of blogging caught me by surprise this week. I was actually shocked when I logged in this morning and and saw that I last posted on Monday. (Even more shocking? Monday was four days ago. And it feels like it was yesterday.) Who knew the week AFTER spring break is actually more hectic than vacation?

Of course, when I say it that way, it seems so obvious. "Wow, Kelly. So what you're saying is normal life is busier than time off? That's bizarre."

But in the interest of keeping it real, I'm telling you anyway. I can't believe it's already Friday. Thankfully, it's also time for another 7 Quick Takes over at Conversion Diary, because that's the perfect blogging antidote to a busy week.

------ 1 ------
Teyla is supposedly watching "Sesame Street" right now. (Which means she's actually trying to climb in my lap while I type on the couch as the TV plays in the background.) Does anyone else get a huge kick out of "Murray and the Little Lamb" segments? I love the hip-hop theme song. "Murray! (Murray!) Murray! (Murray!) Murray has a little lamb!"

"Sesame Street" deserves every one of the Emmys it has received. It's brilliant.

------ 2 ------
Speaking of brilliance, Teyla learned to click her tongue last week and make other assorted noises with her mouth. It's the cutest thing to see her walking around the house talking in clicks consonants like an African native.

------ 3 ------
Remember the post where I begged for highchair recommendations, since Teyla was turning into a highchair Houdini? Y'all responded in spades. (What does that saying mean, by the way? Anyone know? Why do we equate shovels with a terrific turnout?)

To update, I ended up buying the Chicco Polly Highchair in Splash. It came highly recommended by my sister and sister-in-law, and it was a good price, since Chicco appears to be discontinuing that pattern. And I really like it. It's super easy to clean, thanks to its vinyl pad. It's simple to move around the kitchen, thanks to lockable casters on all four legs. It has a clean plastic cover on the tray, which I can easily detach and rinse off in the sink after a meal (or morning snack or afternoon snack or just-before-dinner snack; I spend a lot of time each day just cleaning up from the baby's eating). Best of all, it has a five-point harness and a snug-fitting tray to contain my little escape artist.

Mission accomplished.

------ 4 ------
This could easily be a post unto itself, but Corey and I are in the process of setting up a weekly chore and allowance system for the kids. We've been able to put it off until now because the kids were young and they didn't really care about money. I've also avoided it because it's so darn complicated. How much money is appropriate for a seven- and five-year-old? Do you separate the chores from the allowance to enforce the idea of family teamwork? Or do you tie them together to encourage the kids to earn the money and (hopefully) take more ownership of it? What chores are appropriate for a seven- and five-year-old? How much freedom do I give the kids when it comes to spending "their" money?

Anyway. I was cleaning the playroom earlier this week when one small piece of the puzzle clicked for me. One way for the kids to earn extra money? Let me buy back some of the toys they no longer play with (at garage sale prices -- $1 a toy, for example) so we can donate them to a worthy cause. I figure it will motivate them to part with playthings -- after all, why keep that Easy Bake oven when it could translate into cash that can help you buy that digital camera you want -- AND it will help keep our small house clutter free. Has anyone else tried this?

------ 5 ------
Two weeks ago, I started leading a Bible study group for MOPS women who are looking to go deeper with their faith (or who might be investigating this Christianity thing for the first time). We're kicking things off with the first half of Beth Moore's Daniel. And I am DRINKING IT UP. I haven't been involved in a group Bible study since we moved to the Twin Cities almost 18 months ago; that is a drought for my soul. I have learned that I'm most motivated in my personal study when I have an outlet to share what I'm learning -- and hear what others are learning as well.

It's also a kick to introduce some of these women to personal Bible study (and to Beth; "she's Texan" was my only warning). I pray that God awakens a thirst in their hearts that cannot be quenched by anything but Him.

------ 6 ------
Chances are good you've heard this figure bandied about in a marriage class: On average, women use 20,000 words a day; men use 7,000.

Problem is, it's an unfounded statistic. (HT Abraham Piper's 22 Words.)

------ 7 ------
We are taking the kids to a water park at a local community center tonight. I'm so excited for a fun start to the weekend. Plus, they don't know about our evening, and there's something extra-fun about a surprise. I hope you have a great one, too.


  1. Good to hear from you! I'm doing Beth's Esther study right now and loving it. Actually, we only have one week left and I'm a little sad about it. I learned so much, though, in the Daniel study.

  2. There are one million ideas out there about kids and chores. I thought I would share with you what we do. It is inspired by Dave Ramsey.

    My older kids are 7, 6, and 5. We made a little chart to keep track of what they do, how often and we pay them on payday (every two weeks). We call it a commission, telling them they get paid for work they do. Their chores are cleaning their rooms, dusting, taking out the small trash, helping with dishes, and sorting laundry. We also have an other category, for extra things, like helping the baby, or whatever. As they get older and can do more chores, cleaning their room will no longer earn money. We give them a mark for each chore completed, and each mark is worth a quarter. They have spend, save and give bags. When we pay them, it is a rough 80/10/10 breakdown to spend, save, give. They can use their spend money on what they want. My kids buy a lot of gum. But, my big girls also used their spend money to buy their own books at the book fair.

    Anyway, that is what we do. So far it seems to be working for us, for the most part. I'm happy to talk about it more if you have questions.

  3. I try (for the most part) to be very sparing with my words when I speak. Not so much when I write ...

    My husband, on the other hand, is always so anxious to make sure he gets his point across adequately, that he uses easily twice as many words as I do. i always joke that his motto is: "Why use one word when ten will do?"

    So I've never given any credence to that "statistic." Glad to see I'm not the only one who doubts its veracity!

  4. I always thought "in spades" had to do with cards, not shovels! LOL
    Shovels makes sense because you can shovel a lot of whatever you are wanting. Cards makes sense, because you always want lots of spades.

    Teyla clicking brings to mind The Gods Must Be Crazy. Hide the Coke bottles.

  5. very cute highchair!
    i've got a post coming up about our new chore system. i think things are finally making sense here through a lot of trial and error.

  6. We're up from the deep south tonight, staying in your neck of the woods - Woodbury. We're packing up our new youth pastor and family, and smuggling them across the border tomorrow.

    Hi Kelly! (Can you see me waving?)

  7. #4? Brilliant. Must get rid of these toys. It's like Toys R Us blew up in the playroom.

    Buckling down for snow. I could just cry.