Isaiah is SIX!

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Love this boy!!!
He started his day sharing four boxes of banned, sugar cereal with his siblings, for a breakfast of champions!

We headed to Lunch at Pizza Hut with our book-it coupons!

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Then we went bowling with Grammie White, Kim and Kiya. It was fun. Isaiah was loving it so much, that the last games he was three people as some littles bailed!

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The following day he had a birthday lunch with mom and dad. He spent his $6 from grandma stephie at Red Robin on their games and won prizes!

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Isaiah, we thank God for the gift of you! We love your….
– humor and contagious laugh
– unending supply of energy & intensity
– love for rain and the outdoors
– how you “love God the mostest” but still love us too
– your ability to love huge and freak-out huge : strong emotions
– chatter box : ask awesome questions

We thank God for six wonderful years of ZAIAH, and pray you continue to love God and His Word, growing in wisdom and favor.

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He asked constantly “how many day until my birthday?” …. So we made him a chart!

Real chat …

My bedroom carpet is rough, and dirty. Plenty of tasks I could do. I sit here leaning against my bed nebulizing the baby, again. Many weeks of him sleeping in the bouncy seat to stay prone, to help reduce coughing. I think it all started October 28 with him teething, and then colds and illnesses and now another round of illnesses which the doctor thinks is RSV. I don’t remember the last time I went to church. Judah has gotten the same cold as well, but they haven’t had to put him on oral steroids yet. Praying for healing and resolution. I’m also facing reality that with seven (8) wonderful blessings, and this time of year, germs prevail despite our extra doses of immune building defenses.

I haven’t updated this blog in six months. For many reasons… I miss writing, and keeping track of our wonderful Salisbury adventures. I probably don’t have any readers anymore, but this is my place, reflecting on life and the faithfulness of God. I desire to please only an audience of One, so that’s okay. I am now voice typing, so the writing will not be as eloquent as I would desire. But this is where I am in life, doing my best with what I can, at each moment – and right now that is using my phone to voice type. Trusting God, relying on his strength, and persevering. With that, I do hope to post more often.

I just deleted my Facebook off of my phone. I don’t feel I have abused Facebook, but I do find myself checking what’s going on more often than I would like to. It can be an escape. It does help to keep up with friends and prayer requests and the news. thankfully, I’ve used it more as a tool of communication and sharing photos with family and friends. Yet, tonight I was struck that Facebook will not matter much in 20 years – and those extra hugs, smiles, and listening that I could do while feeding the baby or lying next to my husband at night, has more abundant value.

Life here at the Salisbury household is alive and fun. We are very busy. In a new season of middle school years which requires more prayer and wisdom and definitely patience. I love every age of my children! We’ve accomplished much the school year, are doing well with studies, and music lessons and soccer. We enjoyed Thanksgiving, are fully decorated for the Christmas season, and have most gifts purchased and wrapped.

I am rambling.

I probably should just stop typing, or not click publish perhaps. I’m in a funk. Tonight I might contaminate your good attitude. I am balancing a fine line of contentment and discontentment. I don’t want to be sitting here against my bed with my sick baby. But that’s where God has me. My flesh was just grumbling that I would rather be at a Christmas party with friends…. Irv and the big boys are off to soccer games, and I was struggling with my joyfulness and attitude as I put the little five to bed. Tired. Selfish.

The Lord reminded me to practice Eucharisteo, thankfulness. I am purposing to do just that. My first thought was to get everyone to bed, eat some ice cream, scroll through Facebook, sleep and stay numb. Rather, I decided to delete Facebook off my phone, touch base here and chat with the Lord about my heart. Focus on advent, the Gift.

While things have been going well here and life is great, we are busy. And in the busyness, I can find myself numb. Going through the motions, managing chaos, meeting people’s needs, and dropping into bed at the end of the day. But I still can be numb. Not fully present in joy and heart.

I’ve been keeping very late hours up to 3 AM, getting up multiple times at night, tired, and then sleeping in and not up before children, which means I may awake to chaos. Missing exercise. Missing my quiet times. Not getting filled up with God, so I can pour out and serve those well around me. Lacking patience, lacking joy. Not eating healthy, feeling addicted to sugar. Want to be my friend? LOL.

But being honest, and putting it out on the screen is reality. Then with the Lords strength, I make a plan to persevere, to change, to take time to do the right things for myself and my God, so I can pour out and serve those around me. Which, is my chief desire – to do this life well to the glory of God, to Love and serve my husband and children and family.

I’m grateful for …… his mercies, new days, For Grace. For love, six month old babies, pacifiers, medicine to nebulize little ones when breathing is difficult. Blankey’s, seven-year-olds, drawing, my furnace, socks, snowflakes, mom’s help wrapping presents, online shopping, painted red toenails, forgiveness, God’s word, worship songs, unconditional love, health, ability to walk and run, children, tender hearts, teachable spirit, smiles and kisses from my little blessings …. And new advent book from ann voskamp.

Headed off for my late night quiet time … Chat soon !

Isaac just came over and wanted to tell a story into the phone too….. Voice typing!!!!
I’m drawing now and I’m going to sleep now so goodbye :) i’m thankful for my food, my home, and also thankful for my mom and dad , I’m thankful they can teach me how to read and do a lot of fun things and I’m thankful for my brothers to begin teaching how to play soccer and I like the little brothers, and I just hope that my baby Zion will help get better soon- in Jesus name – amen.

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“A Quiet Place of Rest”

Literally …. “A Quiet Place of Rest”. (My Bible study book!). At hospital since woken at 3am with terrible pain. Lol. Prayers appreciated. Stone lodged in upper ureter and big. In a few minutes I’m going to OR with general anesthesia , scoping, stone laser blasting and a stent for 1 week. If I wasn’t breast feeding baby Z, I’d opt for natural attempts at passing stone and risk of needing more medications and bottle feeding – but Drs believe it won’t pass since it most likely explains why I’ve had pelvic and back pain and not felt we’ll for 3-4 weeks … Also likely reason for midback pain and blood in urine the end of my pregnancy! TMI? Thanks for praying ….

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Back to School … first 2 weeks

Ving – 8th grade

Hunter – 6/7th grade

Tucker – would be 5th grade : I thought it, so I had to write it…

Isaac – 2nd grade

Isaiah – K/1st grade

Eden Grace – PreK grade

Judah – Mr. Distractor

Zion – Mr. Snuggles

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We are back at it, full schedule! I love fall and the return of more routine. We began orientation on Labor Day, and Tuesday began with excitement. Isaac had his first piano lesson, and all the children enjoyed their new baskets and supply bins. Each has a clipboard with their schedules, and they were thrilled to discover a gift waiting when day #1 was completed.

We have the most music instruction and practice this year by far. We have voice, piano, guitar, and drums – all lessons happening in our home. SO GRATEFUL! I don’t know how long it will last, but I am praying the boys continue to grow with passion in this area, and that their knowledge will bring God glory.

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We did “Special Time with Mom” on the porch. They are singing “Stand Up, Stand Up, for Jesus”…

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Aunt Bettie delivered treasures to our garage, and Eden Grace has enjoyed her first Barbie Princess play time. These are treasures from long ago that Aunt Bettie had. I have avoided modern Barbie, and have decided that I will allow fully clothed Princess Barbie to join her play collection.

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Monday September 9th, the thee oldest had their first Classical Conversations Academy. Isaac is in Foundations, Hunter Challenge A, and Ving Challenge B. We had a wonderful experience last year, and we thank God for another opportunity to grow with this structure and community.

 

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I again purchased Ready Made Preschool, and I LOVE IT! We have 30 weeks of lessons. It reminds me of Five In A Row, yet I am provided with every supply I need for each lesson. We just completed Week 1 & 2. (Thanks Kate!) I am using it with a 4 and 5.5 year old mainly, and the third kit I purchased is being shared with Judah 2.5 and Isaac 7yo, depending on the day.

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Here we made our Little Lower Case ‘a’ – ‘apple, airplane, a’s’.

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Playing Go-Fish with Eden Grace and Isaiah with our alphabet cards…

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Tuesday the weather was 90 degrees! (It was 40 yesterday morning at our soccer game and I had out winter coats and snowsuits! LOL) We realized Tuesday & Wednesday would be the last of our hot days, and we headed to Durand Beach. It was lovely, lovely, lovely. We headed out at 11:00, and had already completed many subjects before leaving. It’s hard to break away when I am so focused on school in the fall, but I am grateful we did.

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Even the Biggies like to help the Middles with Ready-Made-Preschool! We decorated our airplanes and they all begged Ving to make their planes ‘super cool’.

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We’ve labeled Judah “Mr. Distractor” for the year. He is so cute, fast, and destructive! Recently his energy is spent sneaking up to his crib, stealing his paci, and hiding downstairs with it while we do school. If he is quiet, I know the secret places to find him. If Irv sees him, Judah covers his mouth with his hand like this… It is very funny, yet we do our best to remain serious. (He just came over to my computer screen and stated. “I hide my pa-ee,” as he pointed to the screen. Gotta love him!)

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I love my Middle Schoolers!

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We had to chop all of Judah’s hair down in the back because when he has his paci at bedtime he twirls his hair into dreadlocks. Recently he has moved higher to the top of his head where there is more hair, and this day he continued to twist a comb in it throughout the day and come running to me to get it out.

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I had purposed to make fancy apple pies for the end of this week studying the letter ‘a’. But, I chose the easier route the RMP book recommended and used graham crackers and apple pie filling! They were still thrilled, and I didn’t eat any, so that was good!

Yesterday Ving and Hunter had their first homeschool middle school soccer team game, SCARLET KNIGHTS, which Irv is the coach for. It was exciting, they won, and have improved so much. I am looking forward to the fall games and watching my three men in action.

Eden Grace was blessed to attend a pool party for her sweet friend Averie yesterday as well. We will miss their family terribly when they move!

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Our church had a wonderful weekend conference of Embracing God’s Truth. Irv was in charge of the organizing of the concert Saturday evening, with Kerrie Roberts. I am so blessed by her lyrics and songs. Afterwards we had a fun outing to Friendly’s with friends and Grammie.

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This morning the Littles and I didn’t attend church. Here we are enjoying this sunshine, snuggles, and our own worship on the porch swing. Isn’t Zion so cute?!? We are SO IN LOVE!!!

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Grateful for my MANY blessings. Thanking God for a wonderful start to the school year. Praying for all the days to come!

 

Zion Valor : the name

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Zion, the name, has been brewing in my heart and mind, and making the baby name list, for babies 4,5,6,7 and now 8. Five years ago with Isaiah’s pregnancy, I loved this name, but we decided upon Isaiah, with the main nickname ‘Zaiah’, because I desired my Z name.

I joked at the beginning of this pregnancy, that if I bore Irv SEVEN sons, I think I should pick the name, and finally have my ‘Zion’! Also noting, in many countries I’d be some kind of boy-producing hero. LOL. (Joke. I believe the sex of our babies are specifically chosen and sovereign by God. Years ago when I pondered why I had no girls, God spoke to my heart through a sermon and His Word, that after Job’s health and life were restored, Job received the exact number of children from God again, and the exact same sex distribution. God knows.)

Around Christmas, I kinda knew I was growing a boy. At that time, I decided to complete my Pandora bracelet using my gift card and fill the limited space I had left, purposing to choose a charm for my Grandparents Cougles and Salis-baby8 growing in my belly. I mentioned to the saleslady that I wanted something with stars or polk-a-dots, or maybe representing the number eight. The first charm I saw was stars and I loved it – and as I counted the stars, they totaled EIGHT! I’m someone who usually takes forever to make a decision like this, but I knew it was the one. Sold. At this time, I did not have any baby names chosen or seriously discussed.

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Somewhere in the midst of Irv’s illness and surgeries, he wasn’t up for deep converstaoins or making decisions, and I sent him this email…

“January 17th, 2013…been thinking about baby names …. I know you don’t want to TALK about it, but really wanted to share my heart and thoughts, so thought an email might be best…

Girls:
Caroline Joy
Selah Jubilee
Jubilee
Aviannah / Eviannah (life giving)
Boys:

Zion Valor (can’t shake this one)

Valor
Luke
Pondering them in my heart
me”

The next time we discussed names, he casually mentioned that he liked Zion. I was SHOCKED! We both prayed about the names.

One night while settling into bed and praying about names, a quick search revealed the name Zion to mean Heaven. As I snuggled to sleep, I looked at my bracelet charm of eight stars circling together. I chose and purchased this charm without any knowledge of the meaning of the name. But now I see this meaning, Heaven. A charm with stars. I felt a confirmation in my heart. Zion, is his name?

When the family-gender-discovery-appointment revealed boy parts, Salisbaby8 immediately was being called Zion. However, we still prayed and sought counsel with Pastor regarding the name.

Names are hard. They are a HUGE responsibility. I searched for reasons to NOT choose this name.

– The term Zionism refers to a political movement for the reestablishment and preservation of the Jewish nation (Isreal).

– In more recent decades Zion is a term utilized a lot by the Rastafarian religious movement to refer to Ethipoia as the true Promised Land and the birthplace of humankind. It borrows a lot of terminology from Scripture and Christianity, yet is very much a syncretistic religion.

– Might create some possible confusion. (e.g. the child’s ethnicity – “he must be Jewish,” or the political movement of Zionism, or the Rastafarian religious movement associated with Bob Marley reggae music, etc.)

Yet, the Biblical use of Zion and the continuous ringing of the name in my heart prevailed…

– Initially, Zion referred to Jerusalem or the mount on which the city was built, but in a broader, more ultimate sense, Zion refers to the kingdom of heaven over which the Lord Jesus Christ reigns.

– 1 Peter 2:6. Peter refers to Christ as the cornerstone of Zion .

– Jerusalem or mount on which that city was built ….also a reference to heavenly Jerusalem or Assembly of God people in Hebrews chapter 12.

– The name might stir curiosity, prompting people to ask (1) what does that name mean?, or (2) are you Jewish? Such questions can be a bridge to evangelism

– Such a name would be a constant reminder to the one bearing it that this world is not his home, and that he belongs to the company of God’s people (if he chooses to follow Christ, of course).

– And, google searches revealed the following meanings: mighty fortress, cornerstone, a safe homeland, heaven, highest point

Through the years, I often encourage my boys claiming they are ‘Princes of the Lord’, ‘sons of the King of Kings’, and ‘Mighty men of Valor’! I even considered Valor for a first name, but would not want my son to be called Val, and Irv vetoed it immediately.

Meaning of Valor: Valor is a Latin boy name. The meaning of the name is `Courageous, Bold in Battle`.

So there it is. The story behind Salisbay8’s name. Zion Valor Salisbury.

Zion Valor, I pray you will be bold and courageous Man of God who fights for the kingdom. That you know Jesus Christ personally, and that He is your cornerstone. May your name be a constant reminder that this world is not your home, and you belong to a company of God’s people! We love you, little peanut. Tons and tons…

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