Thursday, February 28, 2008

What fun...

I would sing "O, What a Beautiful Mornin'" from "Oklahoma" - but it's WAAAAAY past mornin'. (And this morning was v.e.r.y. chilly. ) And that song just has a way of sticking in your brain and repeating over and over and over again. So I won't sing it. I'll just link to it. That way, if you follow the link, it's not my fault. I didn't make you push the button.

We went this morning to take J-man to the dentist. It was time for a check-up! He passed the test. He even went back with the hygienist all by himself. He had his teeth cleaned without needing me there with him. Very much unlike G-man when he started going to the dentist. It took 2 of us to hold him down.

I was called back to visit with the dentist and actually see the dentist examine his teeth. Mini-E went with me. They watched Scooby-doo on the TV and waited. The dentist came. Mini-E is sitting in the seat next to the exam chair. Dentist hands her the mirror and asks her to hold it for him. She shoves it in J-man's mouth.

She decided she was going to help and not just observe. J-man kept trying to bite the mirror and I told him to 'relax'. So did Mini-e. I mean, it's really silly to tell a 3 year old to relax in the first place, but to have the 2 year old mimic me, just made me laugh. She was taking charge. Every one said, 'A future dentist!' .. I agreed that she is a future something.

J-man received a good dental bill of health and headed off to the prize box. While Mini-E climbed into the chair. The dental assistant saw it before I did and asked the dentist if he would look in her mouth, too. I just smiled. (from ear to ear) It was so much fun watching the reactions of the others watching Mini-E. He put on his gloves and asked for a new mirror and looked in Mini-e's mouth and said that her 2nd molars were nearly all the way through. (Yippee!!)

The same dental assistant grabbed a goody bag and filled it quickly. When Mini-E was done I asked her if she was ready to go, she told me no. Until the assistant handed her the goody sack. We stopped at the prize box. She did NOT want a sticker. She did NOT want a toy. She went out to the waiting room while I checked out - and she dumped everything out of her goody bag and took possession of her prize -- a brand new toothbrush. We had to open it in the van. HAD TO.

I then had the brilliant idea to take The Professor to lunch. Where the sodas tasted much like dishwater (The horror!!!) We talked and talked and had a great time. even with nasty soda. (By the way - we stopped at a convenience store to get REAL dishwater free sodas).

I was so blessed!! Mini-E fell asleep on the way home and STAYED asleep when we got there! She is the queen of the power nap! So I was thrilled that she stayed asleep. Then J-man went down for his nap - and it's such a beautiful day!!! We did our math outside!!

Sidewalk chalk works perfectly!
I"m sure about swinging and working on work book pages, though. G gave it a good try.

Mini-Me wrote quotients on the swing set and a line of roman numerals on the slide. We did the 7's times table on the pavers. We reviewed units of measure while swinging.

It was such a beautiful day all around.
It's one of those days that makes up for a lot of the harder days. *sigh*
It was good.
Very good. I want to do it again.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Jumper - a review of sorts...

We searched the local theaters for something to see on our date nights. There really wasn't much else going on around town. I guess I should have checked live theater, but I would have been late in getting tickets.

So we settled on "Jumper". It had an interesting premise. A guy who can teleport from one place to another. Hence the name, Jumper. David thinks he's the only one of his kind after he discovers that he can "jump" in high school when he almost drowns. He moves away from a suspected abusive father, when he's still 15 and not out of high school. He moves to the big city and discovers that he needs money. So David decides to jump into a bank vault.

But first he must see the vault. That's the interesting thing about jumping. You see, the Jumper has to see the area before you can jump there. So how does he get there?? He asks for a restroom for customers. So they walk him down the stairs and right by the vault. What kind of a bank put the restrooms downstairs?? Most customers aren't even going to be heading into the vault.

He jumps into the vault that night and leaves an IOU (or several) and takes bags and bags of money then jumps back to his hotel room. He keeps jumping back and forth. I noticed that when David's emotions were high, he did damage when he jumped into a room. When his emotions were neutral, there was no damage. Just an interesting plot point that I thought added to the movie.

Then time flashes forward and we see David as a 25 year old. He's got a VERY nice apartment. It's filled with all sorts of STUFF. Many pictures line the walls (we learn later these are jump points). The stuff in his apartment is just stuff. It doesn't seem to have a need. With the exception that maybe he takes it with him. There's a yellow scooter sitting in his apartment and I'm still not sure what that was about. He's living the high life and then trouble comes.

Jumpers have enemies. The Jumpers mortal enemies are a group that call themselves Paladins. Samuel L. Jackson is the lead bad guy we see in the movie. They are portrayed as religious fanatics (which I didn't much care for, but it didn't take away from the movie) Actually, the movie had a bit of a "Highlander" vibe, without all the beheading. A Jumper can be stopped by high-voltages of electricity. We see a Jumper
in the jungles, tangled in cords that are coursing with electricity. He asks why all this was happening and Jackson's character says something about only God having the power to be all places.

Which begs to differ the semantics - Jumpers aren't in MORE than one place, they just get there faster than the rest of us. Religious fanatics don't make sense sometimes.

We meet another Jumper when David takes a girl to Rome. This Jumper is cynical and we discover that he's been hunting Paladins and knows quite a lot about them and their organization. They team up to fight Jackson's Paladin and save David's girl friend.

The movie was over far too soon. It moved very fast which surprised me. They could have done a bit more with character development...but all in all it kept me entertained. I came away thinking that it would make a fantastic TV Show and maybe I had just watched the pilot episode.

Hayden Christensen did a great job as David. He started out as a sensitive boy and remained so through the movie. I liked that and never once did I have Anakin flash backs from the Star Wars movies. The one thing I didn't like about the movie was David's immaturity. He started the movie as a 15 year old boy and when we see him later, he was still very immature. Granted, maybe he didn't have to mature because he didn't have to grow through things like jobs and college - he just jumped through life instead.

Which sort of explained the gratuitous s*x
implied in the movie - he never grew up. It didn't really need to be in the movie, but it helped set the tone for David's life. Essentially, everything he had and done was all meaningless.

The movie ended with a great opening for a sequel...but really, I'm not sure it would make another movie....but it would make a fantastic tv show. Maybe someone from TV land will see my blog, steal my idea and I'll have a tv show to watch. :-)

Unlike David, I can't jump through life. While I was typing and thinking - Mini-E decided to lather vaseline all over herself. So forgive my typos and any lack of continuity in my thoughts -- I've got to go make a bubble bath instead of editing.

Time flies....

If fruit flies eat fruit -- what do time flies eat??

it seems like yesterday that Mini-E turned 2. Yesterday she shocked me by asking to sit on the potty. And actually pottied!! I was a bit surprised, even if I have my suspicions that she had come up with an excuse to get me all to herself. Ah, well. It's a start.

The Saturday after Mini-E turned 2, we called on our favorite babysitter and the Professor and I went out on a date. We don't often do this because we don't have a babysitter budget. (Though, I think we need one.)

We left the kids in the capable hands of our beloved Lady-in-Pink and headed out to have a time all to ourselves. Have you noticed that there really aren't any privately owned restaurant anymore?? Everywhere you go, the names are the same. We tried Cheddars. They were at capacity with a waiting line that was out the door. People were standing in the cold rain willing to wait. That said that the food was good - but slow. So we headed across the a Tex-Mex place

There was a wait here, too, but at least we got to wait inside. And we talked. We were able to talk about school purchases for the 2008-2009 season. I realized, with some trepidation, that I will have 3 grades to teach. J-man will, most likely, be in the K4 books. So we'll being the phonics prep and number stuff for him. Which means books from ABeka. :-) It's both frightening and exciting. It felt funny to talk about school for 2008/2009 when I'm no-where near finished with 2007/2008. It was still fun talking about it.

We finally got seated, and discovered a party of 24 sitting next to us. We had one very busy waitress. We ate and headed across to see the movie "Jumper." and then we headed to the book store. Our babysitter, laughs at us every time she sits with the kids. We always end up at the book
store. We both found a book - and I got Mini-Me another "Ramona" book from Beverly Cleary. (She read it in less than 2 days.)

Then we headed home. It's always good to head home when you've had fun. Knowing that the kids would be asleep helped, too. I admit it. Everything went well, Lady-in-Pink said. With a few minor exceptions. Time-outs were apparently given out for spats....

Even Elmo had to head for time out. I almost missed it.
He was sitting in the corner on top of the piano, because he had giggled himself into a riot.

He managed to come out of time-out the following day and hasn't caused another riot, yet. But we've been we're watchful.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Shoes?? What shoes??

Saw this at Jane's - and had to see if I could be barefoot, too. I'm a free spirit!

I rarely wear shoes 5 minutes past crossing the thresh-hold. So I had high hopes of finding myself barefoot in the quiz. I'm a free spirit! The questions were interesting...I was sure I was going to get the right answer (you know, barefoot) ...

Then I got my response and I just laughed out loud. I just take exception to a few things.
1) I'm not flakey and
2) the only responsibilities I play hooky from are house chores(that's what a blog is for, right?) -- but the rest is pretty much me. Even if it's not - it still made me laugh.

You Are Flip Flops

You are laid back and very friendly.

Cheery and sunny in disposition, you usually have something to smile about.

Style is important to you, as long as you can stay casual.

It takes a lot to get you to dress up!

You are a loyal and true person, though you can be a bit of a flake.

You tend to "play hooky" and blow off responsibilities a lot more than most people.

You should live: By the beach

You should work: At a casual up and coming company

Now -- I wonder if I can find a beach home - where I can play hooky and go to the beach!!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Birthday Adventures...

I think my blog title needs a sub title. Something "Birthday Adventures: and other harrowing tales" or "Look out world, she's 2!"

Or Even "Mini-E's got a new man in her life"

I can't believe she's 2. It's so funny to think about.
Compared to the big kids - she's tiny.
Compared to the fact that she's my last one - she's so big!
Some days she's both.

Our birthday adventure was quite the comedy of errors.

I wanted tomatoes to go in our salad. There's a farm just around the corner, down the block aways from us. So I thought, no problem. Get the room picked up and vacuumed and go get the tomatoes.

Then I had this other brilliant thought. It's so pretty - the parking lot is EMPTY. Let's let the kids run. Each big kid took a little kid by the hand and off they ran. While I waited for them to return. The problem came when Mini-E didn't want to return. Mini-Me did her best to dissuade her from making the path change -- but E saw a swing and was making a beeline right for it.

I had to hustle to get her and bring her back to the van. She did not go quietly. But neither did she nap in the car on the way home. So we had chicken nuggets for lunch and I put the kids down for their nap. I had a moment to myself - and realized I needed to make a cake before I put the meat in the oven to cook.

I didn't have enough eggs - and I'd JUST put the kids down for their naps. I was NOT about to wake them up to go fetch eggs. I texted The Professor - because he was at a training and wasn't answering his phone. He said he would pick up a cake on the way home.
Edited for Toby, I forgot to post the picture of the cake. It was CHOCOLATE!!

So I put the meat in the oven. While all this was going on -- I was greatly concerned that the Professor might miss his valentine that I had sent to his work. He had mentioned cookie bouquets as a possibility -- and so that's what he got. Unbeknownst to me, he wasn't going to be at work - but a training - and would possibly miss the delivery.

It all worked out - but it was a crazy day.
It doesn't sound crazy now that I've typed it all up - but it sure felt whirlwind-ish when I was living it. :-)

Still, Mini-E turned 2. A milestone has been met. It's almost more important than New Years - because now, it seems, it's time to face the year head-on.

So there you go - our birthday adventure.

Friday, February 15, 2008

I could be in the next Cars movie...

Should there be one.

It's purely frivolous! but ...

I'm a Lamborghini Murcielago!

You're not subtle, but you don't want to be. Fast, loud, and dramatic, you want people to notice you, and then get out of the way. In a world full of sheep, you're a raging bull.

Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.

I'm not sure I could be qualified as "Raging" or a bull -- but that's a nice car.

I took the test twice and came up with a a Chevy Corvette. Yeah..Okay. Then I tried to remember what the Corvette said (because I'm not really out to get noticed) and I took the test again - and Got a Porsche 911!! It said: You have a classic style, but you're up-to-date with the latest technology. You're ambitious, competitive, and you love to win. Performance, precision, and prestige - you're one of the elite, and you know it

A Porsche was my dream car when I was a kid. *Sigh*

I'll take it. *LOL* Any of them.

What Car (or cars) are you?

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Presenting the Birthday Picture Dress!
Now to finish the bloomers to go with it...because that's the look I want.
Here's where I found the pattern for this dress.
After the first one, the second was easy.

I'm pleased. Very Pleased.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Test Dress....

I finished my test dress. I managed to not be able to sew all week...and finally sat down and just sewed last night. Since I wasn't sure what I was doing - I decided to make the test dress first.

I'm glad it was the test dress. I managed to snip a tiny hole in the dress when clipping the arm hole. It turned out quite cute.

I put it on Mini-E this morning and told her "Let's take your picture!" She said " 'kay." and she smiled and waited.

The camera was dead. It psyched me out by turning on and extending the lens - and then promptly died.

It needed new batteries. So I fetched new batteries, inserted new batteries.
and somewhere between the camera psyching us out and the insertion of the new batteries, Mini-E had changed her mind and wanted nothing to do with having her picture taken.

I dunno - maybe I need to forget making bloomers and find her some stripey tights to go under her other dress. She rolled around on the floor - and I decided to take a picture of the dress using a non-animated model.

It was, relatively, simple to make..except for the arm holes. That required some thought and patience...something about making a facing around the arm hole and getting it to lay flat.
Now that I know how it's all done, I'll make a few modifications and make the purple dress...

For instance, On the blue dress, I used what I could buy - satin ribbon for the neck and shoulder ties. I think I'll buy a slightly smaller (Maybe 1/2 in. wide) grosgrain ribbon for the next dress.

And a daintier, more antique-y looking ribbon.

There you first PillowCase Dress.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Wish me luck...

I'm going to make a dress. Without an official pattern.

I have fallen in love with this thing called a "PillowCase Dress" and think Mini-e will be beyond adorable in this type of dress for her 2 year birthday pictures.

So wish me luck.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Strawberry Ink...

Here is G-man's picture of the "Red Coat" and the soldier. Done with a quill and strawberry ink.

You asked - I'll divulge.
My strawberry ink consisted of half a bag of frozen strawberries that I thawed in the microwave (following the instructions of thawing on the bag). Then I smushed them and pressed them into a strainer to keep the pulp out of the juice.

I collected the juice in a measuring cup and we dipped our feather quills right into the "ink".

It took awhile to dry. I was showing G's picture to The Professor last night - and the ink still smells like Strawberries....mmmmm....

Scratch and sniff - without the scratching!

We were going to make ink out of blueberries, but we had so much fun eating the blueberries that we, well, had nothing left to make into ink.

There you have it. My inky story.

No love for the monarchy..

We started reading "Can't You Make them Behave, King George?" on Friday, while we were waiting at the pharmacy's drive-thru. Yesterday, everyone was on everyone else's nerves. So I decided to get the book out and finish the story.

Along with the story, I thought I'd have a look-see for some coloring pages to go with our story. I actually found some at Love to Learn Place .. under their Patriotic Coloring category. (I googled and they were a search find.) I even found a coloring sheet of good ol' king George. I learned stuff about King George that I hadn't remembered or learned before. The book was fun to read as a read a-loud. Mini-Me got quite the jollies out of the thought of the King making the queen's hairdresser serve food to save money.

I also printed off a colonial lady and a revolutionary recruit for the kids to color. G-man rejected the colonial lady (on the grounds that it was a girly picture).

Then we read the rest of the story.

He colored. Mini-Me colored. It was great.

Then he handed me back the picture of King George, "I don't really want to color this- I don't like him."

Ah. A true revolutionary.
King George would want to punch him in the nose.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Evidence of learning....

I just have to say that walking by my kitchen table and seeing this was just too much fun...

Strawberry ink. Feathers from Hobby Lobby.
A Bible Verse to remind us that Jesus is our source - -
evidence of learning.
I just loved the look of it.

We had talked about the declaration of independence and the methods they would have used to sign such a document. They didn't have ball-point pens back then, after all.

So we tried to make our own ink - we cut our own feathers (okay, I did that part) and then we tried to write with them.

Mini-Me's declaration said "My faivrite color is Pink".

G-man did his two days later and said "I'm going to draw a red-coat."

I about lost my teeth.

I wasn't sure he was paying attention! Not only did he drew them, he drew them well. Even adding sabers! That will be saved for posterity - or as long as Strawberry ink will last.

I love evidence of learning.

Look what I made!!

Mini-Me made mention of the fact that she thought she might like to learn to crochet.
I learned to crochet, years and years ago, from my mom. So I thought it should be easy enough to remember how to manipulate the hook and yarn.

Even better - I found a book by KLUTZ to remind myself of the stitches. The book even had a few patterns that seemed easy enough. So I picked up my hook and some yarn and set to --

and made a hat.

Mini-Me is practicing chaining and then making a single crochet on top of that.
If she proceeds well, she'll be able to make the little purse pattern inside the book.

I've had a request to make a cap for G-man. (Which I'm trying my best to make it very boyish) and then Mini-Me wants a scarf to match the hat.

Last thing I crocheted was a pillow cover. I think it was cute -but I hated it.
Crocheting this hat for Mini-Me was way more fun!!

We had a tea party of our own...

In our studies of the Revolutionary war, we read a brief bit about the Boston Tea Party.
We thought it would be fun to re-enact it.

So the kids dressed up - in their indian best. (We were not set up for those costumes)
and we snuck out the back door...

...and hoofed it to Boston.
Where we found the tea ship sitting safely in the harbor.
Fairly bursting with tea.

I had a bit too much fun with the boxes. I admit.
What else would a Nike box hold, but Sports Tea?

I was quite pleased to hear Mini-Me laugh at my "fancy tea".

They had so much fun throwing the "tea" over the hedges into the front lawn.
(My camera lost all battery power)

It was fun sharing it with them.
I think, if nothing else, it will be a memory at least for a little bit.


We've been studying George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence and The Revolution.

We made this game last a few days.

How many words can you make out of "Washington"?
It became a passion of mine.
And doggone it - I can't remember how many we had - but we were impressed by our numbers.

How many can you make?

Can clocks be passive/aggressive?

My mother-in-law gave me a clock for Christmas.
While - it is a lovely clock, with all sorts of sparkle-y things on it - it's just not me.

It plays music at the top of the hour.
It sings "Michelle" and "Hey, Jude" from the Beatles.
I do think those odd choices for a sparkle-y, shiny, sing-y clock.

But, hey, I'm not the designer. Which is good - I wouldn't have put those gold-ish disc on the side of the clock face... Nor would have put "Hey Jude" on the musical menu.

I'm beginning to think it's a passive/aggressive clock, though.
I'll be sitting in the recliner and it will play "Are you lonesome tonight?"
"You've lost that loving feeling"

It may have that song correct, though.
At least where it's concerned.

It will play "Here comes the sun" -- and the kids really like the fact that they can tell the top of the hour without looking. And during the day, I barely notice it's music while I'm working.

Sometimes, I think it's louder than necessary when I'm reading a book to the kids. Or when I'm rocking Mini-E. She says, "'ook! 'ook!"

But when I'm by myself - it sings at me those two songs..I've begun to wonder if it's passive/aggressive.

I think my brightest amusement came when I opened the wrapping to find a yellow slip of paper inside.

Instructions for mounting the clock on the wall.
I was to use the special wall-mounting device.

It looked a lot like this:

I love the technical terms they came up.
I guess a shine-y, spin-y, sing-y clock can't just have a drywall screw.
It needs a wall-mounting device.

Awards and Blessings

*** Edited to add -- this is going to be an ongoing process ... sorry if it pops up in your Reader more than once! Like Toby at Bananaland says - these are the best awards - no dusting required!!***

I love my blogger buds. You guys are awesome. And I need your help.

You've given me nifty little awards - and they are like valentine's to me.
My problem has been - where to put them??
Some of them morph my sidebar into something that's a bit unwieldy.
But to not display them seems to be rather impolite.

I want to show them off - I want a display case!!

I tried a slide show - and that morphed my sidebar, too. Darn, Photobucket!! Good for somethings - just not a good display case.

Then I realized that I could put all awards on one post, put the link on my sidebar and make it an award page!! I'm so thrilled at this thought - now to remember who gave me what!! This is where I need your help. I've lost all track of who gave me what. I'll comb through my archive e-mails and such - but if you see yours, I'd love to give you credit and more appreciation.

I'll edit this to make it worth reading - and then just put it in a link on my side bar. I'm repeating myself, aren't I?

In no particular order - I display my awards:



I honestly didn't think this blog had a purpose. It seemed like a place for my brain to spew over -- and then I found out about comments.

Then Holly, who's busy shining her Apples of Gold gave me this award.
Click the button to take you to the originator of the award. Or here.

She said the nicest things about me -
I'm going to post them here so that if my ego needs a boost, I can come read them.
Yes, it is all about me.
ComfyDenim -- This dear homeschool mom loves the Lord, loves her children, and shows us her life thru her realistic & hysterical writing. Her posts leave me rolling and nodding my head at the same time. Not only that, but she occasionally emails me to encourage me just when I need it.

Thank you, Holly. I read your blog - You give me much to aspire to.


I think I remember who sent this to me -- Christina?


Regina pass the Daily Dose to me.
I'm very flattered.
The Daily Dose originated here.
Here's a note from the originator: "'s to all the blogs that you've discovered that you can't possibly live without. They make you laugh, cry, think and feel connected every time you read a post. They give you a thrill as you see them loading into your browser and you get an equally satisfying thrill when you see that they have commented on your blog."
Who do I pass it on to?

Those that I read first on my bloglines.
I try to keep my list trimmed -- so I can keep up with everyone
--but I have to admit, I read these gals first.


(Click the button to read about this award)

The Mathetes award blows me away.
I think this could be a hearts desire- to be called a disciple. Wow. Thank you!

Melanie gave me this one here in her original post.
You can see her new digs here.
She's the originator of the Blogaholics Button on my sidebar.


I think Lisa gave this one to me.
I'm amused that I can say "I ROCK!"


This one made my heart melt.

Oh - I flex my muscle every chance I get!!


Okay - so this isn't an official award.
Melanie said if anyone was in her sidebar - they could snag it because she thought they were adorable. I'm in that list - and just had to snag this picture.

From JugglingPaynes - who decided to make her own award.
Click the button to take you right to the "Club".
Or just go visit the Juggler, herself. You should see the eagles that she snapped pictures of.


I can't remember who blessed me with this one -
But I know that my friends make me smile.