Tuesday, July 31, 2012

My thoughts as I read the carnival of homeschooling.

(when I should be working, but that's beside the point).  Here's the carnival link, its at The Common Room. 

I don't usually read the whole carnival every time.  There are always posts on how to keep little ones occupied while you are homeschooling and since I don't have little ones and even if I did, the big ones homeschool themselves, I don't have to worry about that.  Also, there are some odd posts every time, like an article called 10 ways to prepare your child for preschool.  I'm really  not sure what that's doing on a homeschooling carnival, but anyway.  There were 2 really great articles this time. 

This one:   How Kids Benefit from Chores.  My kids are going to benefit from some chores TODAY.  They are so lucky.

And this one:  Labeling Children as Gifted.  I think it's not really a good plan to label kids as gifted, ungifted, clumsy, graceful, smart, shy or anything, at least not as a permanent label.  Two of my kids were very shy as preschoolers and toddlers  (one still is) and I would say "He's feeling a little shy right now and doesn't feel like talking."  trying to explain to the other person why he wouldn't talk but also trying not to slap him with a 'shy for the rest of his life' label.  You know?


Sunday, July 29, 2012

I always say

that I don't need much, that I'm not going to spend much at the grocery, but I always do.  I did use some coupons today and that helped a little, but boy, groceries are expensive these days.  Especially, when your family is spoiled completely rotten.  We ought to go on beans and cornbread for a couple of weeks, then save up and take a vacation or something.  Of course, gluten free cornbread is a little expensive ... maybe rice?  Beans and rice.  Last week I also said I wasn't going to go to the grocery for about 9 days, but then my son ran out of his Lactaid milk, so I went.  I am really, really going to try and go to the grocery every 8 days.  That way I'll save some money anyway.  Going to the grocery every 8 days equals 45.62 times per year, so let's say 46 times per year as opposed to 52 times per year, so I'll go 6 fewer times a year.  I almost always spend about the same amount, so I think I can save money this way, if I don't overspend since it's been an extra day.  I really need to go back to the meal planning I was doing before.  It does help. 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Knitting/dishcloth pattern.

This is completely like greek to me but this is what my daughter says you should do.

Cast on 45 sts.

Rows 1-4 ~ Purl across
Row 5 ~ P6, K6, (P3,K6) 3 times, P6.
Row 6 ~ Purl across
Rows 7-10 ~ Repeat Rows 5 and 6 twice.
Row 11 ~ P3, K3, (LT, K2, RT, K3) 4 Times, P3.
Row 12 ~ Purl across
Row 13 ~ P3, K4, LT, RT, (K5, LT, RT) 3 times, K4, P3.
Row 14 ~ Purl across
Row 15 ~ P3, K5, RT, (K7, RT) 3 times, K5, P3.
Row 16 ~ Purl across
Row 17 ~ P3, K4, RT, LT, (K5, RT, LT) 3 times, K4, P3.
Row 18 ~ Purl across
Row 19 ~ P3, K3, (RT, K2, LT, K3) 4 times, P3.
Row 20 ~ Purl across
Rows 21-52 ~ Repeat Rows 5-20 twice.
Rows 53-57 ~ Repeat Rows 5 and 6 twice, then repeat Row 5 once more.
Rows 58-61 ~ Purl across

Bind off all sts in purl.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

No concrete ideas yet.

I haven't got any concrete ideas for reorganizing my blog yet.  I am still mulling it over.  I'm also mulling over our fall schedule and when we are going to start school.  The county schools here start next week and I hate to get behind them.  It feels bad to us when they get out and we are still doing school.  This year, we beat them by a couple of weeks.  We enjoyed that (even me) for some reason.  :-)  This week, we're keeping busy with VBS, choir, doctors and dentist appointments, etc.   Tonight, I finally did write my "Letter Of Intent To Homeschool" for this year, which is one of the few requirements that Kentucky has, thank goodness.  I am so glad that we don't have to conform to someone else's ideas about how to go about teaching and we can tailor what we do to how the kids learn best.  I'm kind of kicking around the idea of putting the kids in a co-op this year, to get us out of the house a little and do some socializing.  I always think about it, but this year, I think I might actually do it.  :-)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I kind of feel that I should

demotivational posters
do something different with my blog.  So far, over the past, 6 or 7 years, its been just a collection of thoughts, in no particular order, because honestly, my thoughts pretty much go in no particular order all the time.  I find my own blog useful to look up things like what we studied when and when events happened in our family, but I don't know if anyone else finds it useful or illuminating.  I really think it's just too random.  I'm going to look around for some way to structure the blog and some way to structure the archives so that it can be easy to look up resources, words of wisdom and funny stuff and possibly just take some of the whining off of here.  Does anyone have any blogger organization tips or ideas?

Sunday, July 22, 2012

County Fair Projects.

These are the county fair projects with ribbons. 

I think it's cute how she did this page with a tiny crochet project and a tiny knitting project with toothpicks for needles.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Latest knitting project.

The girl spent about 5 minutes being relieved that she didn't have to work on projects frantically for the fair anymore, then started this project, which is a knitted cotton dishcloth.  I think it's too pretty to use.  I guess it can go in the fair next year?  Good to get started on these things in plenty of time.  :-)

I think it is interesting to note that she learned to knit a month ago.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Kind of in limbo.

This is what the sky seems to look like most of the time lately.  It's been stormy.
I'm not really doing much of anything right now.  We have to wait until Sunday to pick up the fair entries and see what the kids won.  I haven't felt good all week and am on an antibiotic, but it really doesn't seem to be working yet.  I've only got 3 more days to take it so I hope it improves me soon.  Consequently, I have been doing the bare minimum, working at my job and that's pretty much it.  When I don't feel good, I go slow and so it's been taking many many hours to get my work done.  For example, I'm not done tonight and it's 8:31 p.m.   Time for my husband to go to bed and my son to wake up for work.  When I feel better, I'll send in my letter of intent to homeschool and get started on the planning, pick up my exercise routine and other projects where I left them off.   I hope it's soon.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Hey, just so you know.

It's 138 days until we need to put our Christmas tree up and 177 days until Christmas.

My youngest son just counted it up.


The summer is just speeding on by.  The local schools start up on August first.  That's only 13 days away.  I haven't even cracked open the Rainbow Resource catalog.  I haven't made any concrete plans as to what we are going to do this fall.  I know that my daughter will be using the same writing and French (she makes a face every time I say this),  son needs to work on spelling and writing, there will be science with notebooking and we'll do some grammar work.  We might go back and do Grammar with a Giggle or possibly get the one for high schoolers.  I think GWAG is for middle school.  Speaking of speeding by, how quickly have our homeschooling years gone?  I mean, we're going to have a college student and 2 high schoolers this year!  Four years and we'll be done.  :-(

We had an awful storm last night.  It knocked out our electricity for 4 or 5 hours.  We had no choice but to adorn ourselves with glow-stick bracelets and  play board games.   It made my younger son happy because he finally had someone to play Settlers of Catan with him.  We really should do that more often.  There for a while, we had board game day every third Sunday, but since my husband's work shift changed and now he works on Sunday, we've let that fall by the wayside.  We need to start doing that again.  

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

What I do have pictures of.

My new log bed, made with logs from our property.  My friend's husband has gone into the furniture building business and he built it for us.  You can also see the newly painted blue walls here including a square of white where one of our children's original wall drawings from a long time ago has been preserved.  (It's in the top right, above the lamp).   The walls look more the color of blue on the left side of this picture and not the brighter blue it looks on the right.  It's a very pale blue.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Of course I didn't

remember to take pictures of all the 4H projects.  I do not look forward to taking those things up there to an un-air-conditioned building where it takes about an hour to sort it all out.  Whew.  It's kind of crazy, the regulations that you have to abide by.   It's very difficult for all of us, staff, volunteers and people trying to enter, to figure out.   I was thinking so hard about the craft projects that I was standing right next to one of my best buddies and didn't even see her or hear her when she spoke to me.  I finally came down to earth and said hello a couple of minutes later.  It was actually kind of stressful, I guess since it was so chaotic and we were carrying so many things.   We had 11 completed projects that didn't fit a category or were over the limits for categories so we had to bring them back home.

Now nothing to do but sit back and see if they won anything.

And we don't have to do that again until next year.

Thank goodness.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Crunch Time.

Monday morning we have to turn in things for the fair and my daughter has finished her 6 foot long crocheted mat made out of grocery bags.  When she takes a picture, I'll share it.  It looks really good, nice and even, to my untrained eye.  Now she's working on knitting some dishcloths.  Later today or tomorrow we need to frame any drawings or paintings that they have done and gather up everything and get it ready to go.  It's a lot of work  but it's fun to let them be recognized for their hard work and they get money from 4H, at least a dollar per project, so that is a great incentive too.  :-)

Thursday, July 12, 2012


We set off a few fireworks on the fourth of July, but it was so very dry outside, that we were afraid we might set something on fire.  We did a few, then watered down the lawn with the hose, just to make sure there wasn't a fire.  It was a very small celebration.  Then tonight, since it had been raining all day, my husband decided to set off a few more.  He started with a particularly loud one and we heard our neighbor's son's voice through the trees (we couldn't see him) say "What was that?"  and I yelled back "Fireworks" to which he said "Awesome."

It was pretty cute.

Freckles does not like them and is hiding under my chair right now, terrified, poor thing.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

It's time.

The crunch is on for the county fair.  Both of my younger 2 kids are going to be turning in various projects for the fair.  The terrariums that we made in our 4H class, the tile coasters, the bean collages, plus the crochet mat, knitted dishcloths, collections of fossils, photos and other things.  Next Monday is when we turn them in and boy do they have enough to keep them busy this week.  

We also need to start thinking about what we are going to study this fall.  It's time to send our letter of intent to homeschool to the school board.  The Rainbow Resource catalog arrived in the mail.  I know the girl is going to be continuing the French and the writing books that she already has.  I know they are both going to to Life of Fred geometry.  I'm pretty sure we're doing chemistry this year, but I don't have a text book or other resource for that yet.  For my youngest we need to work on his handwriting and his spelling.  Both improved tremendously last year, but both need more work.  Later on, when I have time, IF I have time (my life's been crazy lately) I will share exactly what resources we are going to use and also my older son's college plans, which seem to be coming together now.  :-)

Monday, July 09, 2012

Something that I've been enjoying this week.

Up and down.

That's the way some days go.  I tell you.  I was not prepared for the roller coaster ride that is middle age.  Today my mom is not feeling well and I took her to the doctor.  Then afterwards, I had to field calls from family members asking what the doctor had said.  She's basically okay, I guess.  She may have something wrong with her gallbladder so we'll go and have a scan for that on Wednesday.  I was also getting calls from the college my son may be going to next month, which is very exciting, but also a bit scary and bittersweet, because I mean, how did he grow up this fast?!  Also, I got a call saying the custom log bed that a friend's husband is building is done and I got to see the wonderful progress my husband and 2 youngest kids have been making on remodeling the house.  They've got a ton done.  And lastly, I've gotten a couple of update calls from my oldest son who is at camp this week.  He's enjoying himself very much and is very bubbly and talkative.

Today I was up.  Then down.  Then up.  Then down.  Then up.  Then down.  Then up.

I had so many interruptions that it took me 14 hours to get my 6 hours of transcription done.

Some time in the middle, I had to take a nap.

It happens.

I just don't know if I have the strength for another day like today.

I hope tomorrow is kind of normal, but it's really not looking too good.  I've already got a ton of stuff to do.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Some more pictures.

The well from the 17th century fort we visited last weekend.

Another view of the well.
The only sunflower we successfully grew this year, despite planting quite a few.

Freckles eating blackberries.

And looking for the next one.

The only place we could figure out to store it when my son came home with a kayak.  It may need to move to the garage at some point, because I can't see the clock behind it.  :-)

Saturday, July 07, 2012

This week in pictures.


Mammoth Cave natural entrance.

Exiting Mammoth Cave.  Getting ready to leave the 55 degrees and go to 105 degrees in just a few steps.

Inside the cave.

Zelda.  Her facial expression tickles me.  She always looks kind of grouchy, but shes' really very sweet.

Friday, July 06, 2012

F-I-E-L-D T-R-I-P!

We took a field trip yesterday to Mammoth Cave National Park.  Our home school group planned the trip, but several families had things going on and so only 2 families went.  We took advantage of not traveling with a large group and were a bit more flexible than the group usually is.  We took in the walking tour of the cave, then went to Big Mike's Rock Shop and Mystery House, which has one of those houses with the crooked floors and walls where the water seems to flow uphill.  It was a ton of fun.  Then we had a picnic on a scenic overlook and then went to a really great salvage grocery store where I got Gluten Free Bisquick for 75 cents among other things and then came home.  It was a really good day.  I share pictures whenever my photographer (my daughter) feels like sharing them.  For some reason, attaching her camera cord to a computer and uploading pictures is a really onerous chore for her. 

Kentucky law says
KRS 158.080 states the minimal school term is 185 days, which includes 177 days of instruction KRS 158.070 and 10 non-instructional days.

I think someone did the math wrong here, and 177 plus 10 really ought to equal 187, but that's beside the point.  The point is that these 10 noninstructional days are supposed to be teacher meeting days, but since I really don't have any need for a teacher meeting, we try to do 10 field trips a year.  :-)

So the first one for 2012-2013 is done.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Happy fourth of July.

To everyone, even if you don't celebrate a particular holiday today.  I'm celebrating by working.  :-)

Monday, July 02, 2012


Okay, I didn't even bother with resolutions at the new year.  I postponed them until after Easter.  Since then I've exercised, by walking and getting in the pool, sporadically, but a couple of days ago I decided that I'm going to get in the pool every day (unless it's storming) until it gets too cold this fall.  Once I get in the pool, I will exercise, so it's the getting in that is the difficulty sometimes.  So far, I'm doing pretty good.  I've gotten in the pool every day for the last 3 days.  Unfortunately, it's so hot, we have to leave the cover off to keep the water from heating up above 100 degrees and bugs are attracted to the water and come and drown themselves so the first 20 minutes every day is spent scooping out the bugs.  I hate that.   Last night, when my daughter and I were swimming, there were flies buzzing around driving us a little bit crazy.  She grabbed the pool net and said she was going to hunt flies which led to me saying "Be vewy quiet, I'm hunting fwies"  and much laughter.  Then when I looked at her, intensely scanning for flies I looked up and there were 2 on her goggles which she had on top of her head, which I thought was hilarious, because she was hunting them and they were on top of her head.  :-)  Bugs bunny probably did that to old Elmer Fudd at some point, didn't he?


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