Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Ask the expert....

I decided today that it was too hot outside to do anything outside and I was tired of us all sitting around like lumps. We did that last week. Time for a change!!

We never finished our tour through all the states before we took off for about 1 week - or was it two? I forgot. I lost track of time. Sitting around like a lump will do that, ya know.

Today I gave them the option, continue the states or Read about Abraham Lincoln. Only one voice chose states, the other voice was quiet. He really was hoping if he ignored us we'd all go away and he'd get to continue playing.

So majority ruled. The study of the states continues...

Mini-Me: "What's next?" She asked, rather generically. Luckily, I knew what she was thinking -- and I told her,


"What's Oregon?" asked G-man, who was still hoping we'd go away.

"It's a large piano-type thing." Said Mini-me, who the promptly erupted in gales of laughter.
She's still laughing as I type.

Laughing at her own joke....

I"m so proud.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Partly Sunny...

One day, I headed out to the Library. From my corner, I could see the sun behind a layer of clouds. It was really cool. I had my camera in my purse but didn't take a picture. I headed to the Library an thought, I should really take a picture. So I did. From the Library's parking lot. It wasn't as great a shot as if I'd done the picture taking from my corner -- but to me it was good enough.

It doesn't really show up in the picture but when I looked at the cloud covered sun, it still hurt my eyes, the sun was still brightly shining from behind the clouds. I realize that it could have been my astigmatism and light sensitivity. I'm okay with that -- but the Holy Spirit really began speaking to me about this. There are spiritual aspects to this picture.

The clouds could be considered adversity. The trials of life, no matter what they are to us (family, finances, health, life in general) they are trying to cover us up. To over come us.

The light we have because of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us, still shines bright. And the Clouds of adversity can not quite overtake us. They can not quite cover up the light that shines from us.

Now, then, the other spiritual lesson. The on-looker. Looking at us through the clouds of adversity. Because, we know, sometimes life and adversities are apparent and evident to the outside world. (And "they" are looking to see how we handle them.)

So to the on-looker, I want my light to shine THROUGH the clouds...for them to see. That no matter what life might hand me, my light can not be quenched. That my light will still pierce the clouds and shine through.

If nothing else, that the light would shine so bright as to hurt their eyes, and all the on-looker remembers is how bright the light was and not how dark the clouds were.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Seeing things..

I saw a little green person.

A HAPPY little green person........

They were so fast, the only way to get a shot of them was when they fell down.
They were momentarily stunned and I got a few shots.

At least they didn't have a p-38 space modulator.

Getting ready for the new year....

I haven't totally been lost in Christmas thinking. I've been school thinking. I've been collecting my projects and straightening up. Around here, you clean one mess, you end up making another.
It's quite an interesting life.

So I bought school supplies. I'm going to have 3 grades this upcoming year: 4th, 2nd & K4. I like to start the year with new supplies, it's just fun. The markers all have perfect points, the crayons aren't broken, pencils can be found. Ahhh, perfection.

Everyone gets their own school box. Even Mini-E. So we've all got designated colors. Pink, for Mini-Me (aka Princess Pink). Blue for G-man. Green or Orange for J-man and then purple for Mini-E.
It's fantastic how great it works. I don't have to worry about them losing each other's things, they don't have to share. Most of the time, it's peaceful. We also keep around some clipboards. It makes for car schooling adventures, it also makes sitting in the recliner and doing school work a wee bit easier.

This year I did something different for pencils. Last few years, I bought pencils for their own school boxes. This year, I bought generic pencils. I bought some that could be considered girlie, I bought some plain ol' yellow #2's and, get this, I bought blue pencils. They're made of recycled Denim!! It rocks! They don't write very dark and this may present a problem, but it's still a cool concept.

We've had our workbooks and core curriculum for some time now, I've removed it all from the bubble wrap and dumped it in one box. We had a good look over it. We marveled at the #4 on the Fourth grade books and we oooohed over the giant 2's on the Second Grade stuff.

The big kids were thrilled to see the K4 books for J-man, but I'm not sure what he thought. Until the day before yesterday. "I want to do school work!"

I was not prepared. So we talked colors.
I'll take these books and put them in their places. We're still finishing up some work from the old grades, so this has sort of created a bookshelf space shortage. It's been quite the tragedy.

I'll take the teacher's curriculum plans and put them in binders. I love three ring binders.
I wish I'd invented them. And post-it notes. And white-out.
Oh, well.

I'll then take the work books and pull out all the pages. It's mind numbing work that I do in front of the TV. I can't quite manage to pull pages out and eat popcorn at the same time, though. I'm not sure where that deficiency comes from...

Then I'll take the pages and put them in a hanging folder. One folder per subject.
I'm only anal about a few things. This is one of them.
Each kid has a color. The color choices when I started this gig were few, or I was shopping in the wrong store, I'm not sure. So we have Red, Blue and right now we have Yellow. J-man says that "Lello" is his favorite color. (It was news to me.)

I almost bought Mini-E some purple hanging folders, because they were there, but she won't need them for about 2 more years. I was afraid the Professor might not understand why I was getting SOOOO far ahead of myself.
That's one work book all done.

And here's the final look. The green folders hold my records. The yellow folders in the far back corner will probaby be replaced -- they are "games" for the younger set. They came with the school stuff. From about 5 years ago. :-)

So there you go. I'm ready, physically, for the next adventure in schooling.
I've got a planner that's covered in post-it notes. I've got my history/geography stuff to look through. I still have copies to make. But it's all down hill from here.

It's hard to believe that we're going into the 4th, 2nd and K4 grades. Wow.
It seems like just yesterday I was doing K and K4.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

My thoughts wandered....

and I nearly panicked... They almost got lost

Luckily... my thoughts are back and focused on summer and school and school supplies.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

It's okay to be proud of your country....

....because it's part of who you are...

My grandfather served, voluntarily, in the Army Air Corp. During WWII. He was so proud of it. He was the guy in charge of getting the men safely out of the plane during drops. I used to joke with him that he pushed people out of planes. He would correct me. If you pushed them, they might grab ahold of you and take you with them. :-)

The fourth of July always makes me think of my grandfather.
I always reminisce about his war stories...He only told the good stuff but I know there was bad stuff, too.

Whenever I think of my grandfather, I just have to think of others who have gone into war. Those who went in the beginning of the country. Those that are serving now.

I'm just very proud.
America is not a perfect place -- but it's still the best.
Those that don't get it -- need new glasses.
I'm just sayin'....

Happy Fourth of July!!

(It's still the fourth in Canada, too, So "Happy Fourth" to my Canadian buds!!!)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


We've been going to speech therapy for over a year now. I can't believe it.
We started with this adventure and that adventure...and it's been smooth sailing ever since.

Our speech therapist, Miss Judy, has been testing J-man to see how he's advanced. It's been a hoot and a half to watch. He's come sooooo far! He's totally understandable now, in most areas of life. Which is a 180 from being unintelligible. We are rejoicing.

We did learn, from the testing, a few things about ourselves, though.

In this portion of the testing, J-man is supposed to identify the pictures. It's a vocabulary test.
He's going along and can identify many things. He's a bit puzzled by seeing more than one thing in a picture - like lion, tiger, giraffe -- and not having to i.d. each animal. Instead, he's supposed to say "animals".

He's going along and doing quite nicely, and stops at this one picture.
He identifies it as something that sounds like... well, I can't pronounce it. I'm guessing now that it must have been a combination of cock-a-doodle and a cuckoo. He was supposed to say "chicken" or "rooster". But he couldn't get it out and Miss Judy moved on.

Two pages later he clearly identified "Mermaid."

I just laughed.

he can't I.D. a chicken, but he can I.D. a mermaid?? I think I may have the Backyardigans to thank for that, but I'm not sure. If nothing else, it showed that we're a bit weird.

Going on, he's supposed to I.D. a part of the picture.

Miss Judy tried to prompt him. "This is the ceiling, this is the floor. What is this?"

He looked at it and said, "Jellyfish."
In the little observation room, it's all I could do to not fall out of my chair laughing.

She looked at him and said, "What did you say? This is the ceiling and this is the floor. What is this?" He said it again, "Jelly Fish."

I have my new phrase. Next time some one asks me a question, the answer is likely to be Jellyfish. Especially if it's a child and the answer to the question is obvious. Or if it's a child and they're asking "What's for dinner?" -- I think Jellyfish could be the perfect answer.

She finally figured out that he could see the next page under, (even though it wasn't a jellyfish at all) and used the real room to get the answer she was looking for -- "wall". Which is not as funny as "jellyfish". At all.

He scored at a 5 year age and we should finish the testing part on Thursday.
It's been a great thing to see his progress on paper, even though we're seeing it in life.
We do wish the insurance company would see things our way - but we're plodding along and going forward. He'll start K4, homeschooled, when we start all the new grades.

So we celebrate his progress. We work on his grammar.