Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Last night as I was spending some time with Grady (5 1/2) in his bed before he went to sleep, he was talking about an incident that had happened during the day. Hadley was not nice to him (and Eissa), but instead of getting mad and trying to hurt her or something (we've really been working on restraining our anger and talking out the problem and then if that doesn't work, just coming to talk to Mama or Daddy about it), he just talked to her and then just walked away.

He was saying how good that was and we (me and Grady) were talking about how proud we were that he did that. And then...

Grady: "I sink (the way he says 'think') I ate some fruit of the spirit and that is why I was able to do that."

Michawn: "Really?"

Grady (just pondering, looking around the room, laying with his hands behind his head): Yeah, I sink so. I don't know what kind it was...maybe it was an apple of the spirit...or maybe an orange of the spirit."

At that point, all I could do was tell Grady how awesome I think he is. And revel in the cuteness of it all. A teaching on the fruits of the spirit was saved for another day. ;)

Ahh, I love that boy!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Potty Party

We had a big ole potty party yesterday for sweet little Eissa who was so excited about wearing underwear and going potty. We do the "Toilet Training in Less Than a Day" thing and we LOVE it. (With a few modifications. For instance, we don't have a peeing doll, we didn't use a potty chair this time, and we don't give candy as rewards.) This method is not a gradual process that takes place over several months. It requires a solid block of time dedicated to "potty boot camp," where children undergo intensive training. We are not the type to wrestle with potty training and clean up accidents for months on end. We are totally fine with waiting until our child is a little older than the 'normal beginning age,' but then getting it done and over with quicker. We definitely prefer this way. And it's worked splendidly on now 3 of our children.

Eissa has done great and within a few hours, was what I consider potty trained.

The 2 times that she's pooped since we started, she's done so in her underwear. The first time it was actually our fault. Ha ha ha. For whatever reason, we omitted the very pertinent information that not only was she to pee in the potty now, but also poop. We were cracking up at ourselves. This morning when she pooped...I don't know...guess she just forgot. But, she's only had one pee accident...and that was after she had run in the house from helping to wash the car. I think she's doing just fine.

I didn't take pictures of this, but we woke up yesterday morning and had a huge special breakfast for Eissa's special potty party day...eggs, bacon, and pancakes. We sang lots of 'happy potty day to you' ('happy birthday to you' tune of course) and talked alot about how we were all so excited for her and her big day. Then, after we had our late breakfast, we got down to business (around 11am).

Basically, for 2-3 hours we talked about going potty, we read about going potty, we sang about it and drew pictures about it. And, we went potty...every 15 minutes. After the initial 2-3 hours, we slacked off a bit and she had it pretty down pat.

Now I'm just sure to stay on top of it. I ask her very often if she needs to go potty. Then, after a certain amount of time, I just take her without asking her. Most the time though, she will go without prompting if she needs to...I still remind her often though at this point. I mean, it has only been a little over 24 hours.

After the fun, party-like late breakfast, Eissa got all ready for her special day.
"This is Johnnie. What's he wearing? Yes, a diaper." We don't have a doll that pees like the book recommends, but with a little imagination, any ole regular doll works...even one that is at least 25 years old. This was my first 'Cabbage Patch' doll. I got it the Christmas that they were such a big hit. Therefore, it isn't really a Cabbage Patch. Mama found someone that made them and got one from her since they were all sold out at the stores. He's been well worth the money Mama paid. Not only did I play with him and my kids...but, he has now successfully helped to potty train 3 Ebersole children. ;) Thanks Johnnie!!
"Johnnie is a big boy now...he's not a baby anymore. He wants to wear big boy underwear and go pee pee in the potty. So, he takes off his diaper..."
"...and puts on big boy underwear."
"See Johnnie in his new underwear?"
"And when Johnnie needs to go potty, he pulls his underwear down and...
...Johnnie pee pees on his potty."
Choosing her very own underwear and putting them on.

Eissa's turn to try on her potty!!
With everyone cheering her on!
Then we read all about people (or animals...whatever) who had gone before her, blazing the trail in potty training.

And time for another potty break. "Yay!"
Always an audience. ;)
Then it was time to draw some potty pictures.

Everyone was involved. Here, Grady puts a check mark on Eissa's chart. He and Hadley took turns. After 5 potty breaks, she got a sticker. Cass was right in there too...giving lots of cheers and claps for Eissa. ;)

She is still using a diaper for naps and nighttime...pull-ups aren't readily available here, so diapers have to work...but, we just call them pull-ups after they are potty-trained. ;) In fact, my older 2 still use 'pull-ups.' Several in the family have had this 'issue.' The bright side: I'm very glad I have such great sleepers. ;)

They don't always wet their pull-ups, but they still require them. As long as we are on this subject, I'll share this product with you. I am about to get this product for my 'bedwetters.' You can obviously get the male or female version. I've heard great things about this product...actually, I've only heard success stories. So, hopefully soon, we will only have literally one child in diapers. I'll be sure to give you a product review after I try it.

Also, a follow-up product review regarding the diaper liners since I'm talking about product reviews...
The Bummis Bio-Soft Liners are definitely the winners in our book. They are, as they say, super soft. That is the downfall to some...the others that we tried can be washed a few times if only peed on and not soiled and then re-used. But, Bummis are so soft that they cannot be washed. We personally prefer the softness though. They still guard the diaper and hold the poo spectacularly...and are soft on baby's bum. So, yes...Bummis Bio-Soft...clear winner for the Ebersoles.

Alright, I think that's all the potty talk I have for today. ;)

Yay, Eissa...you are such a big girl now!! We are so proud of you!!!!

Thursday, August 13, 2009


After just a hair over 3 straight weeks of visitor bliss here in the Ebersole household (our visitors that arrived on Saturday left late last night), we had a day of doing just that...NOTHING!! You know...I still fed my children and did a load of laundry, did some dishes and planned a little throw-together baby shower. But, what I mean is...we did the BARE MINIMUM for sure!! The kids didn't go to the soccer and dance classes that were scheduled. I did no cooking or folding/putting away of the laundry. I let the kids lay around and watch movies 3/4 of the day (gasp!). I laid around and caught up on some correspondence. It was quite glorious!!!!

So, in my nothingness, I thought I'd post a couple of videos of the nothingness that occurred today. I think nothingness is cute! ;)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Gotta Love This

Ha ha ha...thanks for the forward, Anna!

Saturday, August 08, 2009


Well, Danny and Joel left yesterday morning on a bus headed to Caldas Novas. Then they are heading to Belo Horizonte for a few days, then Rio for the remaining days until they head home a week from Monday.

It was SO MUCH FUN having them around. We miss them already!!

But, onward we march. And more visitors will be arriving today. We serve with Asas de Socorro here in Brazil...a Brazilian organization. We needed an American sending agency. The sending agency we were led to is AMAZING!! We LOVE them! It is called CTEN...Commission To Every Nation.

Sending agencies funnel money and provide tax deductions for donators, among many other things. One of those 'many other things' includes pastoral care. So, the pastoral care team for Latin America (a husband and wife) from CTEN are currently on a trip, visiting us and at least one other missionary couple (living in Rio). They're names are Dick and Birdie Johnson. We've skyped with Dick before, but never Birdie...and have never actually met either in person. We are looking forward to it. They've had over 35 years of missions experience, so it should be really interesting to talk with them over the next few days.

They head out early Thursday morning, so you probably won't be hearing from me until that point. But, until then, enjoy some more wonderful pictures of our time with Danny and Joel. Ahh, sniff sniff...so sad that they're gone. Remember to check out their Brazil blog to see more pictures and find out how the rest of their trip goes...assuming they will have internet access every so often.

We just got a call from them this morning. They are loving life there in Caldas Novas (at a DiRoma hotel/water park) and will be leaving Caldas around 7PM. They'll have a 12 hour bus ride through the night to Belo Horizonte. They are having a great time!

Now for the pictures (lots of them...thanks, Danny and Joel, for sharing) of the last few days...

Last Saturday was just a relax-at-home day. Joel came up with an idea to make a sprinkler for the kids out of some hose that was left here by the previous renters of the house.
So, he, Danny, and Joel whipped out a fun water toy for the kids really quick.
Me and Cass...
...hanging out watching the menfolk.
Excited about their new outside fun.

They were a little unsure at first, but Daddy provided them with a demo.
Then they were ready to go too.

Before, lunch that day...she was already passed out. ;)
On Sunday we all went to familiarize Danny with his birthplace, Goiania. This was the house where he lived for his first 5 years.
We stopped at one of the open markets to look around. It's a sea of tents where you can get all tons of stuff.
Then it was off to Flamboyant, the big fun mall. We ate lunch at the food court (Burger King!!...for some of us) and then walked around.
Cass is quite the big girl these days. Snacks with the big kids in the afternoons now...she gets SO excited when she sees the snack bowls coming. Love the squeals! ;)
July vacation was over as of this week. Classes started back up at Asas, we started homeschool again, and the kids' soccer and dance kicked back up. Danny and Joel tagged along to experience a day with the kids at their activities. Fun-ness.
First, we dropped off the girls at their dance class.
Then we headed to the center of town to take Grady to soccer.

Watching from the sidelines.
After we watched Grady for a bit, it was back to watch and get the girls at dance class. I'll post the dance pictures another day...Danny got some GREAT ones.
And then we were on our way again, back to the car to go downtown to get Grady from soccer.

As you can see, Joel's glasses were a big hit. ;)

Cute pic. Unfortunate her finger's in her nose. ;) Ha.

What a hard worker...great job, Grady!!
Then off to get...CHURROS!
...studying the magic of a churro.
After Joel had his first churro, he announced that he was going to start a churro business back in Beverly. He had several throughout his stay here. "I can't get enough" he kept saying. ;) After this churro stop though, his tummy became a little iffy. So, Beverly folk, unfortunately for you, the churro business might be out the window. Don't they look good though? You can get them filled with either chocolate or sweetened condensed milk. Mmmmm!

Headed back to the car to go home. Our little ballerinas always get lots of stares when we are out and about. ;)
Grady climbing up for gum. ;)
Tuesday evening when Joel came home from work, I had the kids all ready and we headed out to find this quarry where people go cliffjumping about a 10-15 minute drive from our house (and then a big ole walk). By the time we found it, it was dark, so no cliffjumping occurred. But, it was a good adventure anyway. And really pretty.

Looking at the view when we got there.
It's hard to see because it was DARK!! We literally walked back to the car (20 minutes or so through pastures and barbed-wire fences) in the pitch dark. ;) Our kids are awesome...they never even questioned it...just matter-of-factly marched along and climbed through barbed wire. Ha ha ha. Just a normal day in the life of the Ebersole family. Ha.
On Wednesday after lunch...went out to find this. So much for homeschooling with Hadley that afternoon. ;)

Most of our pictures are of our kids smiling or laughing. Just thought these were great serious pictures. ;)
Joel and Danny's mom sent down things for us to make pinwheels with the orphans in the orphanage across the street. So, we took it all over there on Wednesday afternoon and gathered the kids together. Fun!! Chaotic, but fun. ;) And the kids loved it too of course.
Hadley hanging out with the girls, waiting with them for a pinwheel too. She got one, but then gave it away later to a little boy who didn't have one. Sweet.

Showing off his new pinwheel.
Danny hanging out and talking to some of the boys there. He seemed to really be in his element. He said he needed to work in an orphanage some day. Of course, the answer to that is that he needs to come live with us and work in THIS orphanage. ;)
We went over to the little boys' house to visit some more and see some of the other smaller boys.

They started knocking him down...ha ha ha. They got a real kick out of it looks like.

Pray for these kids. They first of all need to have their process completed in a timely manner so that they can be adopted. And then after that is accomplished, they need homes. Praise: Just since this picture was taken on Wednesday, things started to really roll for one of these little boys and he might have a home soon. A family is praying about him right now. Pray for that family as well. Thanks!!
Preface for the next few pictures: Joel had been wanting to get the kids one of these for a while. Being the animal lover that I am NOT, it was not hard for me to not rush into it. The timing was right on Thursday, so here is what transpired. That day we had gotten our babysitter to come for one last hoo-rah downtown with Danny and Joel. We took them to our favorite hamburger joint here and then ran some errands downtown (including picking up some churros one last time). We picked up the kids' surprise and went back home to wow their socks off. ;) The babysitter, her sister, and another friend were also there for the big reveal. ;)

Everybody close your eyes.

After the new wore off a bit and Joel had left to take our babysitter and her sister home, Joel C. set out to make the bunny rabbit a home.
Cute, huh? We haven't decided on a name for sure just yet. Grady came up with John John and Michael Shane. ;) Other possibilities are Chloe, Lucy Sue, and Goldilocks (another Grady contribution). ;) The rabbit is a girl, just FYI...not that it matters in relation to a name. We'll see what sticks. At their ages, us parents might just have to declare a name. Otherwise it will probably be different every day. ;)

Danny, the foreman. ;)
They were shaking the tree and making it 'snow' on the rabbit.

A tad bit excited to have a furry, moving thing in the box. ;)

Everybody got a turn 'building' the bunny house. Eissa was cracking me up.

Grady giving the rabbit her food and water. Now our pet was all set. Although we did have to chase it around the seminary that night in the dark after she escaped...twice. ;)
After we played with the rabbit some, we took some family pictures while the photographer of the family was still here. Thanks Danny!
Then something really funny was going on. I'm not allowed to say much. It involved preparation for the Brazilian beaches...that's all I'll say. ;) Hilarious.
Saying goodbye yesterday morning.

Uncle Danny and Joel were pretty adored around here. :) We sure will miss them. We already do. Thanks for coming!!