Michael's birthday presents, which we are still in the process of finishing. When finished there will be a mini-play area outside, complete with a lava pit stepping stones, wooden balance beam, and the two things pictured. Finally, something for our kids to play with outside. :) My husband has so much to do around here, but he's put those things on the back burner. Just so he can do this for the kids. He's so sweet...I love him!
Redwall cooking- The kids found this website and have started cooking Redwall recipes- Oatcakes, Mem Divinia's Hotcakes and Hunter's Hot Pot
I shouldn't say "it's been a long week" because I feel like that is all I ever say. Random statements are all I have left.
I went this morning for a 2nd shot in my foot for a neuroma, I let go for over 5 years. For all you younger people out there, don't let health problems slide-Take care of them! Or you will regret it later when they are injecting cortisone into the top of your foot.
My new indulgence I posted about is definitely not helping me lose those pounds I've gained since Christmas. So I'll say good-bye to my new friend- at least until after my 20th high school reunion coming up this fall.
Does anyone else feel like all they do is buy groceries and the refrigerator only stays stocked for 2 days?
I've been waking up at 6 AM every morning this week. Waking up early to pray, read my Bible and get a shower before the kids wake up or at least get up. Mostly I've been successful and that's probably why I made it through this week intact.
My back has been hurting for a few days.
I've been putting off writing my letter of protest to the parole board in the case of my brother's murderer. It was really weighing me down to the point of snapping at everyone around me. I was getting nasty and really irritable. I just decided I better go ahead and do it before I get kicked out of the house or my husband starts living on the roof (Proverbs 25:24). Thursday during Tera's piano lesson, I did it. I felt like Frodo after he threw the ring in the fire- the burden was gone- I was at peace! I apologized to my family and all is well in the household again.
We've got about a month of official school left. I'm ready for a vacation!
I like having kids old enough to help around the house!
Here's my version of Garrison Keillor: "Well, that's the news from around here...where all the women are crazy, the men are understanding and the kids know how to make lots of noise."
-1 Tbsp. White granulated sugar
-1 Tbsp. Brown sugar
-1 Tbsp. Butter
-1-2 Tbsp. Chocolate chips (I use the white baking chips, since they are allowed for me)
-1 Tbsp. Water
-1/8 tsp. Vanilla
-Pinch of salt
-Pinch of baking soda
-1/4 Cup Flour + 1 Tbsp. Flour
Combine everything but chocolate chips. Mix well. Add chocolate chips and stir.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 12-13 minutes.
Most recipes let this dough make 1 big cookie. I, on the other hand, prefer more cookies. So I just make them smaller and usually come out with 7-8 cookies.
A while back, we were given a free 6 week trial of the K5 online learning program. My kids really enjoyed this program overall. Here's our review of the pros and cons in our opinion:
This progarm allows the teacher/parent to assign various reading and math lessons to students based upon their needs. K5 has placement testing when you start the program, so no guessing about what grade level your child should start. I loved the teacher reports that showed the profiency level achieved on each lesson.
Personally, my kids loved the spelling program. It's a very basic program- the voice reads the word, the student types and is corrected if wrong. Each word missed is reinforced thoroughly. After reaching certain milestones (50 words, 100 words spelled correctly), the student gets to pick their choice of a La Linea movie. My kids did extra spelling work just to see these short, funny video clips.
The support team offered through email to contact us for further help with customizing our learning experience.
Sometimes the grouping of spelling words seemed strange for 4th and 5th grade students (liberal, welfare, revolution). Our kids had to listen carefully to instructions on how to input answers into the computer. It didn't always register their correct answer or it was difficult if they wanted to change their already entered answer, They were frustrated by this.
Overall, our experience with this program was very good. The customer service was awesome and seemed like they would be very helpful if you were a subscriber.
If you are a blogger, you may want to check out their open invitation to write an online learning review of their program.
I have a confession to make....I listen to country music when I'm alone in the car!
There you go...I said it. Whew, I feel better!
I grew up listening to country music, bluegrass, southern gospel and folk music. Now, my tastes are quite different. Mostly I listen to praise and worship, contemporary Christian and folk music (if you don't count kids' music as a genre)...oh, and my husband play fingerstyle blues on his guitar. I'm becoming acquainted with Muddy Waters, Charlie Patton and whoever wrote "There's a Rat in my Kitchen".
I'm getting off track here.
Anyway, I only listen to country alone for several reasons- the biggest deals with censorship. I don't want my kids to hear bad language or beer drinking songs or other not-so kid friendly themes that are common in this genre. (Personally, I usually change the station when those come on). Not everyone agrees with me, I'm sure, but they're my kids and there ya go!
So why do I listen to it? It reminds me of home....it reminds me of my brother. My brother, John knows probably every country song on the radio and most they don't even play anymore. I hear "Feed Jake" and it makes me miss him a lot. Why? Because he always liked that song and I can hear him singing it in his deep country twang.
I've lost a lot of my southerness since moving to Tennessee...I know that sounds impossible. But things are different here. My accent's not as thick as it once was. I'm raising kids that have to be taught how to say words like "Montgomery", so they don't sound like a "yankee" when we go home.
I grew up in the back woods country of Alabama. If someone was at your house...they were either a friend come calling or a trespasser. I hate the old saying: "you can never go home again". I hate it because in some ways it's true. I left a long time ago and it's just not the same. Went to college, got married, graduated, got a job, moved home, moved away again, had kids. I like my life here, my house in our small town on main street, my homeschool friendly area...but sometimes I just want to get in the car and crank up the country and get sad about not being at home.
There are some things I don't miss...long hot summers, fireants, red clay staining everything, racial tension, shelling peas until your fingers turn purple and extreme weather. I do miss...quiet porch swinging, being in a car just the four of us with the windows rolled down and the radio blaring, southern hospitality, real sweet tea, banana pudding, listening to bluegrass gospel on Sunday morning while getting dressed for church, 3rd Sunday in May with dinner on the ground, visiting the family cemetery, being able to picture with your eyes closed every stretch of road...just snippets. Snippets that all come back in the car when I'm all alone.
Then, I hear a song like this... I think of my dad, my brother, my grandpas, and my nanny.
All the snippets come flooding back mixed with tears and sadness. Sadness that I can't let overtake me.
I pull into the driveway, push one of the preset buttons and walk in the door to 3 little smiling faces and I know there must be a country song out there about just this moment.
Hi, my name is Christy and I listen to country music in the car when I'm alone....
Before you think I'm really intentional and planned out...let me give you the scoop.
I saw a post about 3.14 being National "Pi" Day asking what pie you were having tomorrow? Someone answered "pizza?". Since I knew we'd be working in the yard most of the morning, I took a quick inventory and realized I had the ingredients for pizza. I did not have ingredients for an easy pie. So, I ran out first thing this morning for cleaning supplies and one of those "no bake" cheesecakes and a can of cherry pie filling. I had Tera whip it up and there ya go!
The kids are now watching Veggie Tales- Duke and the Great Pie War!