Friday, January 25, 2013
Question from a "19 Kids and Counting" fan on Facebook: With such a big family to care for, how do you work to save money on things like water, electricity and heating?
We have two things that really help keep our heating bills down in our house: a radiant heat floor and a tankless water heater.
When we built our current home, we installed a radiant heat floor before we poured our concrete. The hot water runs through pipes in it during the winter, and it heats the whole house. Installing that was really something! Everybody that was old enough to help got out there and laid that PEX pipe -- even the little ones were out there tying down the pipe in the floor before we poured the concrete.
We have furnaces and the ability to turn those on when we want them, if we need them. But the radiant heat floor saves us a lot, because it’s just circulating that hot water under the concrete. It keeps our house nice and warm in the winter. We have some cold days here -- we don’t get as much snow as the children would like -- but it does get pretty cold. The radiant heat floor has really come in handy.
This year, we also installed an instant tankless water heater. For a while, we were using a wood-burning furnace to heat the water for our home. The boys would cut the wood for it and fill it up. The problem with that was that the water took quite a while to heat between showers. The new system isn’t reliant on a hot water tank. It supplies hot water for the floor at a fraction of the cost, and it also provides all of the hot water for our showers and baths. We don’t have to wait 30 minutes for the next person to get their shower. We’re never without hot water anymore and it’s not such a scramble to figure out a schedule for baths and showers!
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Josh and Anna are currently in Washington DC for the second March of Life. They left this morning to go there. The event starts at 12:00pm (between 7th and 9th Street) and the walk will starts at 1:30pm.
Here are some photos that were taken the first walk and the trip
Sunday, January 20, 2013
1. Home birth. His mom only had two births at home.
2. he has two older brothers
3. he has four older sisters
4. he has seven younger brothers
5. he has five younger sisters
Friday, January 18, 2013
Meal Plans and Involving the Kids
CHOW on 01.18.13
In our house, organization is very important in everything we do and that of course includes meal planning. Our family works with a large master menu to plan our food for the week. Whoever is going to cook for that week gets to pick what meals they want to prepare. Usually, we plan two weeks at a time: that way we're not going to duplicate the same recipe too often. It also helps us when we plan our shopping list so we can make sure that we get all the ingredients that we’re going to need. Menus and lists are a huge help with that.
Because we're cooking for a lot of children, we tend to make the same family favorites a lot. We’re not going to try out too many crazy recipes that young palates won't be interested in. We eat a lot of green salads and veggie trays. Of course, ours are giant trays! A lot of times we’ll slice up a big tray of tomatoes, sprinkle them with salt and pepper and top with a spritz of vinegar. That’s a favorite snack around here.
All of the kids take turns in the kitchen. I always let each one of them take a turn at learning how to prepare a meal. Usually, they'll start off with breakfast or lunch before diving into dinner. And it's not just for the girls! Some of the boys are really good cooks. They have lots of fun getting in there and being creative. Jason and Justin are particularly enjoying being in the kitchen lately. Of course, the little ones love to help, too. Johannah, Jennifer, Jordyn all love lending a hand. They’re always in the kitchen asking, "What can I do? Can I open this? Can I help?"
We usually have teams of three or four kids that’ll work together on the cooking. If you get more than that, there are really just too many cooks in the kitchen! There’s a leader and then the rest of them follow the instructions of the leader. We label everything so that whoever is in there can find things and know where they belong when they're doing cleanup. The kids truly enjoy their time in the kitchen and it’s a huge help to the family. It really works out well for everyone.
Josh and Anna have not said anything about a new baby. Maybe they are waiting for the okay from the network before saying anything since the last pregnancy that Michelle had ended in a miscarriage. We will keep you update on this matter.
The last pregnancy that Anna had (from what we know of is Michael). Michael is about to turn two in June and Mackynzie is three years old.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
1. was Joseph a home-birth or hospital birth?
2. How many brothers does Joseph have older then him?
3. How many sisters does joseph have older then him?
4. How many brothers does he have younger then him?
5. How many sisters does he have younger then him?
Monday, January 14, 2013
Saturday, January 12, 2013
Friday, January 11, 2013
Teaching Your Toddler to Communicate with Sign Language
FAMILY MATTERS on 01.11.13
Our little ones can get frustrated as they’re learning to talk because they understand more than they’re able to communicate with speech. They get what you’re saying, but they’re not able to really respond with words right away. Imagine how frustrating that would be! One way to help our little ones communicate while they learn to talk is through sign language. Instead of screaming for what they want, they learn a little sign language to help ask for things. Even though they might not be able speak yet, they can easily learn to sign. Toddlers are sharp! They know more than we give them credit for. It really doesn’t take them long at all. In our home, we’ll teach the toddlers some basic words like: more, please, all done, yes, no, thank you, mommy, and daddy. It really helps us all to communicate.
As I’m teaching Josie a sign with her hands, I’ll sign it back to her and speak the word out loud. We just keep repeating it until she’s got it. It helps to make a game out of it with little rewards, like cereal bites. As Josie reaches for more cereal, we’ll work on learning a sign like “More.” I’ll do it first, say the word and then show her how to make the sign with her little hands.
If she screams or grabs for the cereal, she won’t get it until she asks for it. I just always make that a rule. If you cry or scream, you won’t get it. So you have to try it again. We’ll practice three or four times, so she’ll realize that the squeal just didn’t get her what she wanted. But the sign language did. This is why the little ones get the reward. It’s because they signed it. And they all practice it and learn they can get what they want when they ask the right way. It really doesn’t take long at all and often turns into a skill that the kids keep with them into adulthood.
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
1. what is John's full name?
2. what is his favorite verse:
3. what is his job?
4. What is his favorite episode?
5. How many brothers and sisters does he have younger then him? and how many does he have older then him?
Today is trivia questions for Jana and John David's birthday. Like Jedidiah and Jeremiah's birthday trivia, there is going to be seperated. Trivia answers will be posted at 5:00pm on January 12, 2013.
1. what is Jana's full name?
2. what is her favorite bible verse?
3. what is her favorite food?
4. what does she like to do?
5. How many minutes is she older then John David?