Thursday, July 31, 2008

I need to take better notes.

Last night, the 2 youngest kids were doing the room cleaning that their Dad had assigned earlier, but were discussing putting it off until early this morning because they were tired. My youngest said something about falling asleep in "mid-clean", but I didn't get the exact quote written down, so I'm not sure exactly what he said. Luckily, this is a blog and not a newspaper, and he doesn't read it, so I won't be in trouble if I got the quote a little bit wrong. All I wrote down was "mid-clean" which I thought was funny. I did a little better the next time he said something quotable a few minutes later and wrote down the whole sentence.

A few minutes after they stopped cleaning, he was playing a huge game with army men all over the living room and my daughter looked at them when he was done and said "who won?" and he said "the guys with the big person." I can't exactly explain why this is funny to me. It's just so typical of the way my youngest says things, that it's cute to me.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Jotting things down while driving.

I went to the doctors office yesterday and this time I found it, right where it was supposed to be. Apparently last week, it was still covered in construction scaffolding and according to the person I talked to on the phone it looked like it wasn't finished, so no wonder I missed it. I think she was just being kind. But anyway, this time I got directions including which parking garage, which pedway, etc. The whole thing is brand new and the parking garage is automated and the elevator announces your floor in an automated voice. It's interesting. It really did feel like 2008 in there.

So on my way yesterday I put a piece of paper on the dashboard of the van and jotted things down to blog about. Hey, no reason to waste time, right? Besides, most of my ideas come to me while I'm driving. I probably should drive more, if it weren't so expensive.

One of the things I jotted down was that I should explain my weird name my blog. I may have in the past, but I'm too lazy to search so here goes. When I first got on the internet, I used Paulanne as a name on bulletin boards and things. It's my middle name and fairly uncommon and it worked. Then, I tried to get on a medical transcription discussion board and that name was already used by someone else. So I started trying to come up with other names. I typed in a whole bunch of names and they were all, already taken. Finally, after about 20 minutes or so, I looked at a picture of a cat on a birthday card my brother had sent me and typed in Fatcat. I was in. I spent a year or two talking quite a bit on that bulletin board as "Fatcat". Then when I tried to join blogger, it was already taken so I combined the old nickname and the new and became Fatcatpaulanne. Its long and goofy sounding, but hey, it's me.

The next thing I jotted down so I wouldn't forget to tell you was my youngest son's plan for making money, literally. My daughter was talking about how she would spend the money if she won 5000 dollars in a sweepstakes. My son said he'd like to get permission from the president to just print his own money legally, so he could print as much as he wanted forever.

Another thing I wrote down was to update about our orthodontist visit and the reason I thought about that was because I noticed that I was writing things down with the pen I'd stolen from the orthodontist's office. (Accidently, of course!) My daughter does need braces to the tune of 1800 dollars after insurance, so I guess that's in our future. We may wait until after Christmas, since December is traditionally the best month for my Cafepress store.

Finally, the last thing I wrote down while going 70 mph on Interstate 65 was a comment my daughter made last week. My husband's car muffler was dragging the ground and he wired it up with a coat hanger. My daughter said that Dad fixed the car "the cowboy way". I guess we've read too much Hank the Cowdog!

The picture is of a morning glory. I thought they were pretty and planted some about 3 years ago and now they are taking over. At the rate they are going our whole house will be covered in them. They are growing up my corn, tomatoes and sunflowers, trailing across the yard from garden bed to garden bed. I've been pulling them up by the roots all summer, but to no avail. They are winning.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Well ...

I did end up going back in to help my daughter with the room. My oldest son and I did the heavy furniture moving. I didn't think she was going to like the furniture arrangement once it was in place and she didn't. They have a kind of a low loft bed in there and a regular bed that is supposed to go under it. She wanted them separated, which, of course, takes up more space. What they really need in there is a traditional style bunk bed. We have one, but can't fit it in the door of their room because of the angle of the doorway because it's got a bookshelf on the end and is really long. So, now we are pondering what to do next. I have tried to explain that they need to get rid of some things to make space in there, but my words fall on deaf ears. I have a bunch of packrats in this family and they all want to keep everything. It drives me crazy.


Monday, July 28, 2008

The cleaning.

Okay, I only lasted 5 minutes on cleaning the kids room. I went in there and I tried to move something off the floor. No. My daughter didn't want it there. So I tried to move something else. No. Not there. Again. No. After that, I made this offer: Either they clean it on their own or I clean it on my own. My daughter and I have way different cleaning styles and they do not seem to be compatible. Outside her room, she does what I say, but inside it, she wants everything her way. I guess that's fair. Anyway, I excused myself, worked on the kitchen instead and then after I took her to the orthodontist, I took her shopping for some new storage stuff for the room.

My Day Off and The Insane Cat.

Today's my day off, so of course I have a list of a million things to do. My house is a total mess and I need to attack the main part of it first, then I promised the younger kids that I'd help them clean their room, then I've got to take my daughter for her first orthodontist consultation, to see about getting braces. I hope the rest of the day goes better than it has started out. I had a run-in with my daughter's cat this morning before I even had coffee.

Let me just say that I am a cat person, always have been. I love them. I talk baby talk to them. I love to go out on the deck at least once a day to visit the cats. It relieves stress. I enjoy Sammy, Zoey and Zelda very much. Zena though, has always been always been weird. In the past, she used to run in the house every time the door was open. That's not the weird part. She often will pee in the house when she runs in. She has also peed on me twice when I was trying to put her out. This is not the way to gain favor with the lady of the house, let me tell you. I have spent a lot of time Lysoling and bleaching my kitchen because of that cat. She had quit running in for a long time but has recently escalated this behavior again. I don't know if it is because of the kitten being here or what? Who knows what goes on in the mind of an insane cat? Anyway, this morning while my coffee was brewing, I was feeding the pets and guess who ran in and peed on the rug by the back door? If she doesn't stop something will have to be done. Are there any free pet mental health clinics in Kentucky?

Anyway, I'm off to get started on my to-do list for today.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


I finally put in my Rainbow Resouce order. It was kind of exhausting. Such a big catalog. So many things I want but not unlimited money. First I made a 3 page list of everything I wanted. Then I narrowed it down to one page. Then 9 items. Then I put those 9 items in my cart. Hmmm. Too much money. So I revised the cart again and again and finally got down to the 5 items I wanted most. Now I've got to start scheduling and planning, organizing and making lists. I kind of like doing that stuff and kind of don't because at first it seems kind of overwhelming. I've got several years experience now though, so I should be able to get one of last years lists and just plug in the new subjects.

A while ago my daughter asked me what I was working on. I said 'the new school schedule' and she said "Yay!" I guess someone else besides me is ready to get started.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Summer is going quickly, seems like.

I can't believe July is almost over. The county schools here are going back to school on August 5, but I don't know if we will. We still have a lot of summer type things we want to do, like put our pool up (!), go camping, go to 6 flags, the state fair and a lot of other stuff. It will still be hot here until at least mid September probably. I don't know whether to start school soon and just take breaks for all these things or postpone starting school? I personally am ready for it to start. We've had about 4 weeks completely off - the kids haven't even really had chores and I'm ready to get back into our routines again. But, on the other hand, my goal was to get the kids room's cleaned out completely and some other home improvement things done before we started back. So, when to start? I don't know. I actually think I get more done when I'm also doing school than I do during the breaks, because my routines fall apart. I think I'll just go ahead and order my stuff and when it comes, we'll get started. If we end up taking frequent breaks, that'll be okay, as long as we get 180 days in sometime this year.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I just realized

that the science curriculum I downloaded is for ages 6-9, not grades 6-9. Hmmm. It still looks good. I wonder if I could supplement it up to grade level somehow? I will look at science in my trusty catalog and see what the alternatives are.


Today I'm recycling my to-do list from yesterday because I DIDN'T DO ANY OF IT.

You thought I was starting a new self-improvement campaign, didn't you?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


I have been in Walmart this month. Twice. No, actually 3 times! We were trying to avoid Walmart this month and have a spending fast and we've done okay. The first time I went to Walmart it was for underwear and towels. Kind of necessary things but really, we could have waited. The second time, I was actually just getting some groceries and my youngest wanted to get them there, so he could look at a toy to see the price. We only bought the groceries, not the toy. Then tonight, we just felt like going. We were going to see if they had the 5 cent notebooks and other cheap school supplies but the notebooks were out of stock and we didn't see anything else we needed, really. We picked up a couple of things for my mom and dad and then we spent some money very frivolously on cupcakes that were in the marked down bakery section. (We shouldn't have shopped hungry.) We still didn't buy as much as usual, I don't think. Although we sure have been to the grocery store a lot ...

To do list.

We don't have anything on our calendar today. I do have pretty long to-do list. For one thing, I need to call my doctor and find out where in the world they moved their office to. (excuse my grammar!). I drove an hour yesterday, mapquest directions to the new office in hand, and could not find it. It was supposed to be on the corner of these 2 streets and have a number of 401, but there was no 401 there, just a 575 and a 615, so I drove around for a while looking, paid a dollar to park in a parking garage so I could go to the bathroom and drove home. Joy.

Today, I'm also cleaning out my purse which hadn't been cleaned out since vacation. I've got all my purse contents on my desk now and my purse is in the washing machine. It will be a relief to be able to maybe find something in there.

I've made some progress on planning for the new school year. I'm going to use the free science curriculum found here as a basis for science. I'm going to continue using the Christian Cottage curriculum for geography that I already have. I don't use it exactly as written and I supplement it with other things. For the younger son, we're going to be working mainly on his reading fluency. For the older 2, we're going to be working on writing. My oldest son will be going for his Introduction to Computers Clep next, not sure when (*I need to discuss with Dad.) and will still be working on the same math text from last year. For the younger two, for math, we'll start with Key To Measurements, from Key Curriculum Press, I think. We may just do the geometry we started last year, but I had self-discipline issues with that curriculum and just couldn't make myself make them do it and Key To is supposed to require minimal teacher involvement ... anyway, we'll see.

I'm going to write a schedule for myself this year and try to get exercise back into my routine. Boy do I ever need to do that!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A schedule within a schedule.

If you all remember, I scheduled screen time for everyone exactly the same, a way too generous (in my opinion) schedule for when the TV and computers can be on (for the kids) and the times they must be off. This is easier for me to keep up with. Lately, we've been having some squabbles over the living room TV because it has the X-Box, so today the kids sat down and hammered out a schedule of who gets the TV first each day and who gets it second and third. They based it on our old "Kid Of The Day" schedule which has been working for us for 7 or 8 years. Each kid had 2 days a week when they are first, 2 days when they are second and 2 days when they are third because each day has 2 days a week when they are "Kid of the Day". Thursdays are supposed to be parent's choice days but they've worked out some kind of schedule for that too. I'm thinking about having TV turn-off day on Thursdays for the kids, although that won't make me very popular around here!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A little better.

I'm thankful for an air conditioning repair person who will come out on a Sunday. The temperature in here is falling very slowly, but at least it's going down.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Rotten Week.

There's just no way else to say it. It's been a rotten week. My mom's been sick all week and I've been trying to keep their dishes washed, mail in, medications straight, etc. while also attending to our household and now our air conditioning is out and we are so unbelievably hot and miserable. It's 89 degrees in our house at 10:00 p.m. and we can't get it to cool down. It's only 80 outside, but it seems no air will circulate. I have windows open and fans on, but we're still absolutely miserable. I'm going to tuck away some money for the next time this happens for a HOTEL. This is pitiful. I know we are wimps and our ancestors didn't have air conditioning, but when you are used to it, it's hard to transition to not having it, suddenly, on one of the hottest days of the year (98 degrees this afternoon). Also, the kids and I went to get gas this afternoon and we couldn't get the gas cap off of the van. I totally can't understand why we can't get it off, but we can't. We stopped short of asking strange men at the gas station to open it for us. I hope next week is better.


No idea what we're going to do this weekend. I'm going to do some work for my medical transcription job, do some cleaning on the house and I don't know what else. I might start looking at homeschool resources again and see what I need to get for school this year. The county school kids start back to school in a couple of weeks. I don't think there's any way we could start that early, especially since I have no idea what books to use with anyone this year. I really need to get on that.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Mad Libs.

Since we finished our last read-aloud book, we haven't had time to go back to the library, so we've been doing Mad Libs at night instead of reading. If you aren't familiar with these you should be, they are a lot of fun. The kids take turns giving me adjectives, nouns, verbs, adverbs, etc. and I fill in the blanks in a story. The words don't really fit in the story, so it's funny when you read it back.

Here are some of our favorite phrases from the Mad Libs we've done, including the favorite one from vacation, which the youngest thinks is especially hilarious and keeps making me read over and over again.

Excerpt from Ghost Story
"Once there was a little kid who went on a snarky hike through a purple forest in the middle of the moon. At first, he had fun watching the cute little giraffes go farting through the trees and talking to the chairs that dodged between the bushes. Then, it got lovely."

Excerpt from a Vacation Packing Quiz.
"Are you taking your pet battle ox and have you packed plenty of battle ox chow for him? Did you remember to take all of your toilet articles such as your front tooth brush, your ring toe paste and your universal lotion?"

Excerpt from A Letter of Recommendation.
"I would like to recommend my cousin Devin for the job of assistant tank in your big camp. He has just graduated from 3-D Academy and has a degree in clicking. He has had experience teaching towels to play video games. He is ambitious and round. He will make a very explosive camp counselor because he will work like a giraffe and is as smart as a platypus. He is also as honest as an x-ray gun is long."

These are especially funny if it is midnight and you are exhausted or if you are on a really long car trip. :-) Plus, they teach the parts of speech.

Trying to set the world record.

My mom has been sick this week. I don't know exactly from what. It could be food poisoning. It could be a stomach flu or diverticulitis. It has not been pleasant for anybody and I've been running over there a lot, calling the doctor several times and I took her to the emergency department yesterday. This morning, I woke the younger kids up to tell them to get in the car because we were going to grandmas and my youngest said "Are we trying to set a world record for going to grandmas the most times in one week?"

Yes. Hurry up!

I think we may be through the worst of it now, but I don't want to say that, for fear I'll jinx it, so pretend I didn't say it. (or type it. Whatever.)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Somedays I am just full of ...

blog ideas.

Today, I keep thinking of things to blog about. Somedays I couldn't blog anything rational if my life depended on it. (No comments please about how rational I actually am when blogging!)

Here are some of my thoughts for today.

Yesterday I made 2 phone calls I had been procrastinating about, successfully getting every Monday until August 11 filled with doctor visits, orthodontist appointments, etc. I'm proud of myself for actually picking up the phone and calling. If you've been reading my blog for a while, you know how much I hate talking on the phone. I've been in a state of intertia this summer in other ways too. I haven't done many of the things I'd planned to do this summer. I need to snap out of it.

On guilt, I still feel guilty for not going to either of those parties a couple of weeks ago. With one of them, it was a graduation party and I felt guilty for not going for that reason, but I did mail their cards. For the other, I missed seeing my cute little nephew. Still, I was not in a fit state to see people that night ...

My mom picked up a tiny little color TV at a yard sale last week. The kids have really been enjoying it. I really didn't think it would pick up any channels here in the boonies, but it does, surprisingly. This morning, I caught my youngest sitting on the front porch sneaking in a little extra screen time!

My daughter has been adding the suffix "ish" to everything lately. I'm not sure where she gets it. She says she feels "sickish" and that she's "boredish". It's funny.

Our County Fair 4h Debut.

Is that really how you spell debut? Weird. Anyway, all 3 of the kids had planned to participate in the 4H Small Pets Club exhibition at the fair, but only the girl ended up doing it. The youngest backed out because it involved doing work (putting together the dog crate and packing some things) and the oldest decided that his cat allergies would just make him to miserable. (He also has work allergies, but that's not the excuse he used yesterday.) So anyway, the girl and I packed up the dog crate, newspapers to line it with, a feeding bowl, a litter box and 2 cats and went to the fair to display them for fair-goers. My daughter was supposed to answer any questions, but really no one had any. We planned to take Zoey and Sammy (pictured) but Zoey was AWOL, so we took Sammy and Zelda. Sammy was a little scared at first but then decided to take a nap. The kitten was a delight. She had so much fun. She played with Sammy, then played with the newspaper, the litter tray, the bars of the cage, then Sammy again, then curled up and took a nap. Very cute. Since there were no other cats in competition, my daughter won the blue ribbon for her cat display. She also won for her cat scrapbook since there were no other pet scrapbooks in competition. :-) The prize money totaled $6.00. Next year, though, watch out. She's found out that her jewelry that she already makes, the potholders, the drawings, photography, the paintings and all these crafts that she just normally does on a daily basis can all be entered into the fair for possible prize money and ribbons! It was fun and we learned a lot.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Working on the Weekend.

I've been working all weekend and boy am I tired of it. By my calculations I should be able to type one more report and then quit for the night. With the kids this week, I've listened to a book on CD called Esperanza Rising. It was very good. I've been meaning to listen to it for a couple of months at least, but finally we got around to it and I'm glad we did. I'm also reading about 5 books since we went to the library on Thursday. I'm not done with any of them, I'm just reading all 5 at the same time. One is called "The Joy of Doing Things Badly" by Veronica Chambers. I laughed out loud when she said she had the attention span of a fruit fly - me too - or at least the patience of one. I'm also reading Harry Potter book 5, "Order of the Phoenix", "Don't Kiss Them Goodbye" by Allison Dubois (the person the show "Medium" is about) and "The Vice Busting Diet" and another one about raising kids written by a mom of 10 or so. I pick them up and read a little when I get a chance, while transcription jobs are downloading or transmitting. It's interesting reading them all at once. It's certainly not boring.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I kind of broke the spending fast last night.

While the kids were at VBS, I went to Target, Dollar Tree, Staples and Barnes and Noble. At Dollar Tree I got the 3 items the kids were supposed to bring for their donation to VBS, total of 3 dollars. Then I went to Staples and found out their back to school sale was over so I didn't buy anything. Then to Barnes and Noble to look for a book for a baby gift. I couldn't find it there so I went to Target and bought the baby 2 books. Nothing for our family so even though I shopped, I don't think this counts? Do you? It was fun anyway. :-P

Why I am qualified to homeschool my children.

It's not because I have a degree. I do have a degree in child development which is basically a developmental psychology degree with an emphasis on preschool education. When I got out of school I was basically qualified for minimum wage jobs. It was very discouraging. All the jobs in preschool education paid very little. I ended up working for a couple of day care centers, then Head Start, then ditched the field altogether and used my degree to open the door and get a state job in the food stamp office. They accepted my degree as something, maybe proof that I could learn? It got my foot in the door anyway. Of course they had to train me on the laws, the methods etc. I was in training for probably 6 months off and on. Later on, after my first baby was born and I wanted to be home with him, I got a diploma from a correspondence school to do medical transcription and switched fields again.

A lot of people think that the college degree that I have helps me homeschool but honestly, I don't use anything I learned so many years ago. What I use is my basic common sense, the internet and books that homeschoolers who have went before have written. Really, all you need is to know the laws where you live; what you are supposed to teach, how many hours and days you are supposed to have school, what you need to report and to whom and then you can do it. All of these things are easily found on the internet, just do a search on homeschooling laws by state or country. Then, go to a curriculum fair or order a homeschool catalog and get some curriculum.

Your children can do all of their schooling by correspondence school, by computer/virtual courses (even in kindergarten!), by computer software courses, through workbooks (there are tons of these) or by hands on curriculum. The homeschool publishing world has exploded recently and there are many, many options. Some of the workbook/textbook based courses even have a script for the teacher read to the student! If you really don't feel that you can teach a subject to your child, even with computer software, DVD classes or a script to follow, you can hire a tutor or trade off with another homeschooling parent who is better at that subject than you are. Your child may be studying rocket science, but it's not rocket science trying to find a way to get them taught the subject matter - it's just basic parenting. If your child wants to learn to play the piano, you find them a piano teacher or teach it yourself if you know how. If they want to know how to dance or do karate, you find them a class.

I have no doubt that I could do this even if I never had set foot in a college classroom. So far, I have not hired anyone to teach my kids, but we have done a ton of field trips and participated in homeschool co-ops. Also, we often call in Dad for a math consult. (He's got a college degree too, but not in math.) What I'm trying to say is it's not my degree that makes this possible. I'm not saying that teachers in schools don't need degrees. It's a lot different teaching a group of kids and aligning with state educational standards and preparing for testing and all the other things teachers need to do. I'm only educating 3 easy, reasonably well-behaved kids. It's not the same thing at all.

That said, I also know that homeschooling is not for everybody. Some people just don't want to and that's fine too. Everyone has to make their own choices, just don't let not having a degree hold you back. That's all I'm trying to say.

I think I could've made that a lot shorter. ;-)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Library stuff.

I found out last night that our library has free access to a CLEP test study site. How cool is that? I'm going to go and take a couple of practice tests and see how I do. I also have been requesting a lot of books at the library. They either buy them and call me when they are ready to check out or get them on interlibrary loan. This is a very nice service and it saves me money buying books I might only read once or twice. I really need to poke around the library's web site and see if there are any other services that they offer that I might have missed. ;-)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Helpful site if you want to work at home.

A lot of people ask me about working from home because I do medical transcription at home. I just stumbled across this article while looking for something else. It's a year or so old, but still a very helpful list of ways to earn money from home. I checked a lot of the links and all but a couple that I checked still worked. Work from Home Ideas.


T - Thursday. It's game day at the library and the kids have been going to VBS at a friend's church all week, so I'll probably take the oldest to game day and the other two to VBS tonight, part of my endless chauferring duties. It's also garbage pickup day and I remembered it this time so we put 2 weeks worth of garbage out today for pickup.
H - Ham. I baked my first ham yesterday. I had accidently bought one that needed to be cooked instead of a pre-cooked one. It turned out really good. Delicious, in fact.
U - Unnamed cat/Zelda. She's still living in the bathroom but I really want her to get moved outside today because she's doing a lot of yowling. It's actually a good sign, one I was hoping for, that she'd get attached to us and start to want our company. Now if we put her out, hopefully, she'll stick around and not take off on another long hike!
R - Rainbow Resource Catalog. I've been looking it through it again, making lists and dreaming. I wish I could buy about half the stuff in it.
S - Spending Fast. It's not going well because of the aformentioned going to the grocery every couple of days, but also because I keep hearing about these wonderful sales everywhere. School supplies. Summer clothes (which my daughter wears year round). I feel the need to go shopping. Can I resist? Should I?
D - Delays. We still don't have our pool up due to vacation, endless busy-ness and illness. I hope we get it up soon.
A - Anticipation. We've got a lot coming up, our first county fair 4H entries, hopefully our first ever camping trip, the state fair and we need to figure out when to use our free 6-Flags tickets.
Y - Yay! My youngest son is attempting to read his first Harry Potter book. A year ago, there would have been no way, but his reading ability has gone up by leaps and bounds this year. He's asked me to help him with about 3 words so far is all. I hope he can be successful. Once he can read those, he can read pretty much anything, I think.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Here she is.

Her name is Zelda Ziggy, following in the tradition of naming our girl cats names that start with Z. (Zena, Zoey). This name was chosen by our youngest son who has never before got to name a pet. So anyway, she's no longer the Cat with No Name although I think that's kind of catchy. My parents have a calico cat that my Dad has named "Cat of Many Colors". ;-)

Monday, July 07, 2008

A cat with no name.

We have a kitten with no name living in the bathroom. When my friend's cat had kittens, my youngest asked if we could have one. I sarcastically said "What's one more?" not realizing that he didn't get the sarcasm and thought I'd said yes. Anyway, today was the day we got the kitten. My friend's kids had named it Arrowhead but our kids want to change it. Youngest is in charge of the naming this time and he hasn't come up with anything yet. She is going to be an outside cat, like our others, (allergies!) but when I took her outside earlier, she decided to take a long hike so when I finally caught her, I put her in the bathroom. She can live there until she gets used to us.


I stayed home over the weekend and really had a nice relaxing time. I need that every now and then. It seems like I'm always going someplace. That said, I could stay home today, but I'll probably go out later. We're not shopping anyplace but the grocery store this month, supposedly for essentials, but we've really, really been shopping a lot at the grocery store. We've been 3 times this week and now we're out of sugar. The cheapskate in the book I read would just do without sugar because really, that's not essential, but coffee really tastes bad without it. Really, really bad.

I haven't decided what to do today. We need to clean the kids rooms, the once a year, total clean out, but that really doesn't sound like much fun, does it? I'll be glad when it's done though. I wish I could figure out some magical way to turn 2 kids bedrooms into 3 while I'm at it. I also need to do some yard work, some school planning and tons of other things, but I don't know if I will. I might just continue my little personal mini vacation I've been on all weekend. ;-)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

I stayed home.

I stayed home alone last evening while my family went to one of the parties. I really wanted to go, but it was that time of the month when a woman craves solitude, if you know what I mean. I really missed seeing everyone, but I really enjoyed my alone time too. It really had been a long time since my husband and all the kids had gone somewhere together leaving me home. Maybe a year. I was home with the dogs who apparently need to go out and in and out and in and out and in but I mostly ignored them and had my own little movie marathon, had a lovely bowl of ice cream with chocolate sauce on it and thoroughly enjoyed myself.


Saturday, July 05, 2008

What to do?

We're invited to 2 parties today at exactly the same time. I enjoy parties but I've been thinking and kind of wondering if I could send the kids and husband and steal some alone time. I can't remember the last time I had any alone time. It has been a while. I'm sure I'd enjoy either of the parties very much, but I'd also enjoy having peace and quiet, finishing my book, maybe taking a long soak in the tub ...
I'll decide later.

This morning, I'm working and the younger 2 kids are watching TV. Saturday morning is their main block of TV time for the week. The TV schedule is working well because now I don't have to keep up with any individual schedules. Everyone knows now when it is on and when it should be off and the kids have gotten pretty good about turning it off, most of the time.

The oldest child is still asleep. He has had 3 sleepovers this week. The first one, he slept okay, the second one, he slept about 3 hours and the third one, not at all. When we picked him up and brought him home yesterday, he'd been awake for about 30 hours. He kept nodding off in the car and when we got home, he walked in his room and we haven't seen him since. I have opened up his door and listened for breathing a couple of times. ;-)

Friday, July 04, 2008

Money Fast, day 4.

Well, we had to break down and get some fast food last night. I told the kids to pack some snacks to eat to tide them over between library game time and skating because we weren't going to buy anything out. They did pack some granola bars and goldfish crackers and then left them at home, so we went to BK and got 3 items off the dollar menu and spent three dollars we didn't mean to spend this month. Not too bad, so far. We'll try to do better next time.

I'm not sure how much money we'll save this month doing this, maybe 20 dollars for eating out because we use dollar menus exclusively, but I seem to spend a lot of money at Walmart for what seems like a bunch of nothing!

Here's my thought for today.

Wouldn't it be nice if some of these establishments that cater to kids would have more perks for the parents who bring them there. This week I spent a couple of hours at the city pool and a couple of hours at the skating rink. I'm not the kind of parent who just drops off my kids at places like this and leaves. When they are in the pool, the lifeguards are kind of inattentive and the skating rink employees are not babysitters. They pay as little attention to the kids as possible.

Anyway, I spend a portion of those 4 hours wishing for comfortable seats, coffee, high speed internet, etc, I'd even settle for magazines. I also think that those pizza places that have game rooms with games that give out tickets the kids can redeem for prizes need to up the quality of those prizes a bit too. Let's try to make them last until we get out of the parking lot anyway. The parents would be more likely to take the kids if they didn't feel like they were being um, taken.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Nothing profound today.

I've not spent the last 24 hours doing much thinking. Gotta take a break you know, LoL. I think I'm finally ready to get back into looking at the Rainbow Resource Homeschool Catalog and planning next year. We'll continue to work on geography together and finish that eastern hemisphere study we started last year. I need to pick out some type of language arts curriculum for the younger 2. I'm not sure if we can continue the math we've been doing with them for much longer. I think we're on the last unit of it. And I need to decide what to do with the teen. No idea. He says that he wants to take woodworking as an elective. That's as far as we've gotten. I also need to send my letter of intent to homeschool to the school board to let them know we'll be doing it again this year.

It looks like I've got a lot of thinking to do over the next month or so!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


Believe it or not, I have been thinking on some things lately. (I try to only do it rarely!) I was thinking about this CLEP test in American History and it's got me wondering about the definition of education. What do we want our kids to know? What do they need to know? Is being able to state the circumstances and the date of Bacon's Rebellion an essential life skill? Can you do it? Odds are you may have memorized it for a test and then promptly forgot it again. What is the point of that? I think that knowing general trends and large events in history is good but I wonder how much detail one needs to know. I heard once that Albert Einstein did not memorize anything he could look up, trying to free brain space for important things. I'd like my kids to know a trade/way to make money, how to manage that money, how to manage a home and how to manage their own health. However, in order to get a degree and have a better chance at getting good employment, they have to jump through the educational hoops and that means learning some useless facts and then promptly forgetting them. What exactly is the point of that? Is that education?

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Speaking of the Grocery Store.

Yesterday, when my oldest son and I were gone to do the CLEP test, my 2 youngest kids were at Grandma and Granddaddy's house. They all decided to go grocery shopping together and apparently, they had a lot of fun. Grandma and Granddad enjoyed the fact that the kids helped load the car, carry things in and put them away and the kids enjoyed the fact that grandma told them to just throw anything they wanted into the cart. It was a win-win. They might have to make it a weekly event.

Money Fast.

I read this book about saving money a while back and it recommended an occasional money 'fast', only spending on essentials. We're going to try it for the month of July with no trips to Walmart or any other department store, no, no Micheal's crafts or Lowes. Only groceries and gas. I will still pay for the kids to go skating and swimming as they are not very expensive and I do feel like we need to get out and enjoy the summer somewhat. We don't have our own pool up yet, but after it is up, we will cut out the trips to the city pool.

Note to self: Remember to pick up adequate supplies of chocolate at the grocery store, because if you buy it at the grocery store, it's just part of the regular food bill and does not count. ;-P


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