it's all grace

a journey with the Thomason family

Tag: preschool (page 1 of 4)

Life Keeps Moving

Titus' Class Photo (6/5/15)

We may have had a major event in our lives this week with the birth of our third child, but that doesn’t mean that life here has just stopped. I had this realization today as I took Titus to school and picked him up today. His teacher handed me the photo above of his class which you may remember from the day they took his class photo a little more than a month ago. As I quickly found Titus in the top row middle, it was as if I just realized we have three kids. They are all at different places in their lives, especially Titus who plows ahead with Czech schooling and learning tons of new things. Avery continues to make us laugh, especially with all her new questions about baby Karis. As for Karis, she just loves to eat and sleep but I know it won’t be long before her preschool teacher is handing me a photo of her class. Life keeps moving.

Sidewalk Chalk (6/5/15)

Bethany’s dad (aka “Papa) and I spent a ton of time today mapping out our plans for the next week. Papa and Nana we will heading back to the States next Saturday and we are still hoping for them to see a little more of Europe. They have thoroughly enjoyed their time here, but Nana’s birthday is on Sunday so we’re going to try and take her to Krakow to celebrate. It’s only a 2-hour drive from here so we figure we can make that happen for her, even with a newborn. We’re hoping to leave tomorrow at some point so you’ll just have to read that blog and see what happens!

We had a handful of visitors today who came to see Karis for the first time. A few of our missionary friends came by to meet and hold her, many of whom came bearing gifts as well as our landlord who came down with flowers, new clothes, and a winter outfit (shown below). I love having all the pink flowers in the house and it was just nice to see our friends and even have the opportunity to introduce them to our family. You’ll also notice in the photo below a little card from our landlord which we couldn’t completely understand but was so nice (I should also note that along with the clothes and card, she handed me a bag with a bottle of champagne). Again it’s just fun to have people here in our home celebrating with us!

Gifts (6/5/15)

Karis is doing great and again gave us some good chunks of sleep last night. It’s never easy to adjust to a new baby sleep schedule, but Bethany has been incredible this week and I’ve been doing my best to help her. It’s a little different this time around as I still feel the pressure to spend time with Titus and Avery while also helping Bethany take care of Karis and this is just part of the transition from two to three kids, I guess. It’s definitely nice to have the help of Papa and Nana and I’m doing my best to convince them that they could adjust well in Europe.

Karis Yawn (6/5/15)

Papa and I took Titus and Avery for a bike ride / run this evening and we discovered a great new place at the end of our street. I’ve never gone down to the other end of our street (barely two blocks), but tonight we went there and discovered the river and Polish border. We’ve been to the river and border many times but not right at the end of our road which was new and fun. The weather was perfect of a bike ride and I grabbed a few photos. The first photo is literally at the end of our street, about a 1/4 mile away from our driveway.

Fun By the River (6/5/15)

Fun By the River (6/5/15)

Fun By the River (6/5/15)

Finally, Titus found his kid-friendly razor and shaving cream that he got for Christmas and all day has been talking about “shaving” or saying “I gotta shave.” Tonight he finally convinced me to let him (note: it’s just this Spiderman themed foaming cream and plastic razor–no blade). So in keeping with tonight’s blog title that “life keeps moving,” I present this photo of my five year old. How is it that my third child is born and my five year old starts shaving in the same week!?

Titus Shaves (6/5/15)

School Photos and Friends From Afar

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

What a day! It’s just before 10pm here and I’m sitting her with a smile on my face. I’m looking over some of the photos I got from today and am just thankful for God’s grace and excited about the next few days. Here’s a little summary of the day:

First, we had to divide and conquer this morning because we found out yesterday that it was picture day at Titus’ preschool. Bethany had a doctor’s appointment (baby check-up) this morning at the same time that picture stuff was going on at the Titus’ school, so I stayed home with Titus and Avery while she went to the doctor. I got the kids all dressed and we walked to Titus’ school around 10 to get ready for pictures. I didn’t know if they were doing just a class photo or individuals, but we were ready for anything! It was an absolutely gorgeous day outside, and they ended up doing just a class photo outside under a beautiful blooming tree. Here’s a few photos:

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

I spent some time watching the other boys interact with Titus and also watched Titus’ reaction, but I can confirm that language is still a battle. The other kids are trying to talk to him and he’s still confused about what they are saying. I also noticed that they were kind of copying him, but I don’t know if they were being mean or just playing? It’s so hard to tell. At one point Titus hand his arms out like an airplane and was spinning around. The other kids joined him and were saying, “Ja jsem Ty Ty! Ja jsem Ty Ty!” which I understood as “I am Ty Ty! I am Ty Ty!” (the kids call him Ty Ty, not Titus). I just assume they were being silly? Speaking of silly, here’s Avery walking home today staring at her own shadow.

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

This afternoon we finished cleaning up the house in preparation for our friends, the Severances, arrival! Steve and Judy are from our sending church in California and Steve is one of the pastors. They actually flew to us from being in Israel the past week or so. They had a flight from Israel this morning, a cab ride from the Prague airport to the train, a 3.5 hour train ride to us, then a short car ride back to our town. Needless to say, they are troopers! We picked them up from the train station around 5:30pm tonight and it was such a joy to see them. We ended up taking them to a nearby mall for dinner and coffee and just had a sweet time catching up with them. It’s seriously such a joy to see them and we’re so thankful to Placerita for sending them to us for the next few days. Here’s a few photos from tonight. The first is of Avery and Bethany playing a little clapping game while we were waiting for the train to arrive, the second is one that Titus took of us with Steve and Judy at the mall, and finally there’s one of the kids playing at the mall’s play place.

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

Friends From Afar (4/23/15)

Tomorrow is Titus’ 5th birthday! The smell of a baking cake is wafting through the house as I type and we’re excited to a do small celebration with him tomorrow. On Saturday we’re headed to the zoo for a more formal party, so we’re all looking forward to that. I’m excited about what the next few days hold!

An Eclipsing Start to Spring

An Eclipsing (3/20/15)

I almost always work from home on Fridays and today was no different. Except at one point I walked to the kitchen to get something to drink and when I looked out the window I was confused at what I was seeing. I’ve probably looked out that window hundreds of times, but today was a bright sunny day and the window looked as if it was tinted. Like most Czech and European windows it swings open so I went to it and opened it and looked outside. Thats when I realized it wasn’t the window, but rather it was the sky that was tinted. We were experiencing a solar eclipse!

An Eclipsing (3/20/15)

I confirmed this with another missionary online and then checked the news and sure enough Europe and parts of West Africa were witnessing a pretty amazing solar eclipse. For us in Czech, we were seeing about 75% of the sun being covered by moon. One of our windows had sun shining through the blinds and the tiny holes were showing the crescent shaped sun spots on the floor and table. Above you can see them in both photos. It was pretty fun and I’m glad we had clear skies today to witness it on this first day of spring.

An Eclipsing (3/20/15)

Titus went to his second full-day of preschool and it was another day where he took the bus to a nearby preschool for the entire day. While he’s gone I’m always curious to watch what Avery does at home. Today she did the USA puzzle we have again and then later she was drawing on the white board in her little blue chair (shown above). It’s actually a little sad to see her search around for things to do because she’s just not used to having Titus out of the house so long during the day. Normally they are inseparable and play together all day, so I think in a small way this is a transition time for her as much as it is for Titus.

An Eclipsing (3/20/15)

When I picked Titus up from the bus this afternoon he was really excited. He had a necklace on with a picture of Donald Duck (it actually read “Kačer Donald” in Czech) and it had a piece of candy stuck to the back. He also had a fruit cup snack and a little treat in his hand which he quickly handed to me to hold for him. I actually tried live streaming the entire thing to Twitter today so Bethany could watch from home and below is the video that I captured. It’s a little choppy, but you can get the gist. In the beginning you can hear me speaking English with the lady that I met on Wednesday. You’ll see how happy he is, but it doesn’t change how strange it is to be picking up my four hear old from the bus!

A Big Boy on a Big Bus and Answered Prayer

Today was Titus’ biggest school day to date. I say “biggest” because it was packed full of new experiences for him and for us. Before I talk about that I want to say that the entire day was an answer to prayer from start to finish. If you read our blog yesterday and prayed for this then thank you! God was so gracious today.

Titus was really excited about school this morning which is in and of itself an answer to prayer. Considering how he was on Monday, this was a huge blessing. Bethany took him to school early so he catch the bus for his field trip to another preschool today. What made today different was that he was going to be gone for the entire day until 3pm, as opposed to us picking him up at noon. In the photo below you can see his little head and stocking hat peeking up in the center as he gets read to board the bus.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

The bus left sharply at 7:45am and took the kids to a nearby village for a “school swap” thing where they just basically have a normal day but at a new place. We don’t really understand why exactly they did it, but here’s a photo of Titus on the bus as they were about to pull away. I think the school charters a city bus to make this happen because I don’t think the schools have their ow buses like in the States. And I didn’t ask Bethany if she cried, but I’m operating under the assumption that her eyes were just a little teary as she took this photo.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

While Titus was away on his trip, I worked from home and Avery was hard at work too on her USA puzzle. She did the entire 50+ piece puzzle by herself today with no help from Mommy or Daddy. She was really proud of it and so I took a photo of her “big girl” moment. Admittedly, she has done this puzzle with us many times so she has it almost memorized. But instead of state names she always, “Where’s the one with the cow?” or something like that. It’s great.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

Also while Titus was at school, we had an appointment at 1pm to sign both him and Avery up for the next school year in the fall. Our friend Martina was kind enough to come help translate and talk Czech for us which was a great blessing. It ended up being a really quick appointment and we actually met with Titus’ teacher (this is also strange to me because why wasn’t she on the field trip?). She was really nice and we were in and out of there in just a few minutes. Here’s a few photos of us walking over to it.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

This photo below is of Bethany, Martina, and Titus’ teacher finishing up.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

About ten minutes to three I walked down the road to pick up Titus from school hoping for a good report about his day. It only take a few minutes to walk from our place to his school so I was there early and as I stood there a woman walked up to me and said, “You’re an American, right?” in perfect British accent English. I was surprised, but I calmly replied “Yes.” Then she told me that her son and Titus are in the same class and that her son speaks English so we should get them together outside of school. This was actually an answer to prayer because we have really wanted to have more relationships with Czechs. She went on to tell me about herself and that her husband is from the U.K. and he only speaks English. We were talking for a while and finally said, “Am I supposed to go some place else to get my son?” She told me the bus was expected to arrive until 3:10 (which I didn’t know). If you want my opinion, it was just the Lord getting me there early so I could have this conversation.

She was very kind and gracious and thought that just letting Titus speak English to another kid would be a blessing to him (which we totally agree). We ended up exchanging phone numbers and we might try and plan to do a walk or go to the park with their family on a weekend. Just thinking back on it now I’m smiling because God is so good. She didn’t have to walk up to me and introduce herself and talk for a while, but I was really thankful just to have a normal conversation with a stranger. It has a very long time to just have a full, open conversation like that in English with someone I don’t know. I know that might sound weird, but man was it encouraging.

Titus Rides the Bus (3/18/15)

While finishing up my conversation with the lady at the school, the bus pulled up right on time. There were a few cars blocking the street that the bus honked at and when I looked over I could see Titus’ face light up and he waved to me. I waved back and just smiled at him. He looked so big, but still so small. I was going to take video of him getting off the bus but since I was still kind of in conversation with that lady I only got the above photo.

All the kids got off and Titus ran towards me and I said, “Dude! Did you have a good day?!” He said, “Yeah, dad. It was awesome!” He told me all about the bus ride and the slide at the school that “doesn’t have any grass.” I asked him about nap time (which he’s never done at school) and he said, “I got my dinosaur pajamas on all by myself!” He told me he cried for us a little bit while they were walking, but I’m not quite sure where or how long, but I assume it wasn’t too bad because it didn’t seem to bother him. All in all, I think he did alright. The funny thing, if he didn’t do well, I probably wouldn’t even if we’d find out. The teachers don’t speak English and Titus isn’t always the most reliable source of info! I’m just happy that he was smiling when he got off the bus and overall he was exited about his day. He’ll be doing it all again on Friday and when we talked to him about that tonight it didn’t seem to bother him.

It’s weird to watch him grow up. Seeing him on that bus was surreal. I have memories of being on the bus around his age and I’m realizing he will probably remember this too. This is whole process is part of entrusting your kids to the Lord. He has to watch over them and I have to trust that God is taking care of them. The Lord is sovereign over everything including school bus rides! And I can’t and won’t always be there for everything Titus experiences, but I’m happy to be there to pick him up.

St. Patrick’s Day, Playing Outside, and a Prayer Request

It’s St. Patrick’s Day. I’m sure you saw many people today walking around wearing something green and tonight people around America (not so much Czech) will celebrate by throwing parties and drinking beer (on a related note, I have an entire story about witnessing a drunk driving accident on St. Patrick’s Day that I’ll never forget). It’s sad to me that this is how we (as Americans) celebrate on a day that is supposed to remember a Christian man who loved gospel of Jesus Christ (for more on that, see Kevin DeYoung’s excellent, short post today).

At the Josiah Venture office today there were a few people wearing green, and our Norther Irish friend, Rachael, brought green clover cookies for us to enjoy at our our meeting. They were (magically) delicious–sorry, I couldn’t resist. We had a great meeting a Bible study this morning from Philippians. I’d much rather be spending my St. Patrick’s Day around God’s Word then doing just about anything else!

Playing Outside (3/17/15)

Bethany took the kids to the park this afternoon and they said that had a great time. In fact, when I got home today the kids came running to the garage to tell me all about it. Above is a photo that Bethany got of the flowers near the park (and hey, there’s lots of green!). While they were there they even saw some kids from our church. Titus even found a new friend who was riding a little play motorcycle and Titus was just running around alongside him for a while. It’s been really nice to play outside and enjoy the warmer spring air. Here’s another photo from the park with Avery enjoying the sand.

Playing Outside (3/17/15)

Tomorrow Titus will head off to a longer day of preschool because they are doing a “school swap” thing where they bus the kids to another school in town about 10 minutes away. Normally we pick him up around noon but he’ll be staying until 3pm. I can tell that Bethany was prepping him today because he kept telling me all about what he’ll be doing tomorrow. He loves riding on the bus so I’m sure he’ll enjoy that. Below is a photo of the announcement about it at the school and we normally just use Google to try and translate it all. Thankfully this time around his teacher emailed Bethany directly about the trip and what she should pack for him. As I’ve been writing this, she as hard at work trying to get everything together for Titus’ backpack.

Playing Outside (3/17/15)

Our prayer request is simply that Titus would do well and not be scared. We have been memorizing a verse on fear together and we are continually reminding him of the words. He’ll be going tomorrow and Friday on these little trips so we’re hopeful that it will go well and that he would do alright. Thank you all for praying and for continuing to encourage us!

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