Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Getting some things done.

I have gotten some of my things that I needed to do done this week and I have been able to do some things for others, which always seems more fun and satisfying for some reason.  One of the families in our homeschool group is moving and we have been helping them a little with some painting, loaning them my son's dorm fridge and keeping them company while they paint.  I don't know how important that is, but we've enjoyed spending time with them.  I've also really enjoyed getting some things checked off my list this week.  I met with a Realtor about my mom's house and it is worth about what I thought it would be.  He and I bonded over Alzheimer's because his mom had it as well and he was very nice.  Now I absolutely  have to start moving some things out of her house.  It's heartbreaking, but now that she is in a nicer place, I feel better about it, somehow.  Almost anything is worth it to me to keep her where she is.  I don't want any of us to have to go through the trauma of moving her again.  With that in the back of my mind, I also want to start moving a few more pictures and things there to make her room more homey.  I am also going to try and do that today although with my Suburban out of commission, my furniture moving abilities are very limited.

Anyway, we do what we can.  Schools are getting ready to go back around here, but we are not.  We are going to start school for my youngest after his brother goes back to school.  We are doing one school-ish type thing.  I had always wanted to order a history kit from Hands and Hearts, but never had because I'm always a bit short of money.  Well, recently I found out that they are going out of business at least temporarily due to their son's poor health and also that they had separated the ancient coin kits from the rest of the history kit and just the coin was not expensive, so I bought one and my youngest 2 kids are restoring a coin from the Roman Empire.  How cool is that?   I'll take a picture and show it to ya'll as soon as it stops looking like a circular piece of dirt.  :-)

So since I don't have pictures of anything else we've been doing this week, here are some art journal pages.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wow, what a stormy, stormy night.

I spent a lot of time holding a trembling Freckles the dog who was terrified.  It just stormed and stormed and stormed.  I heard thunder that sounded like it was right on top of our house.  Whew.  The electricity went off and right back on a couple of times.  Max walked the  house, clicking his toenails on the floors so that even between the thunder claps, I didn't get much sleep.

I got up and went to church anyway.  My art was still on display.  I don't know how long they are planning to leave it up.  It makes me feel a bit self conscious.  I got several compliments on it, but I think I might be ready to take it down.  We'll see.  Everyone has encouraged me to sell it at craft sales, but I often can't sell at the ones my daughter goes to, because she sells through 4H and not just anyone can sell there and I work every Saturday which really cuts into sale times.  I don't know.

Anyway, after church, since I didn't get any sleep last night, I needed a nap and now that I am away, I'm preparing to go see my mom.  :-(  I really don't want to.  I'm not all that comfortable going to visit her in a faciilty and I almost always have to go by myself, but that's what I'm going to do.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Good times this week.

We had some good times yesterday.  One of my friend's kids is in a production of You're a Good Man Charlie Brown and we went to see it last night.  We also had a gym day and planning meeting earlier in the day.  It made for a full day and a good day.  We opted not to go out to eat with the group and to come home and cook and eat and nap for a while mid-day, which helped a lot.  I think I would have been too exhausted to enjoy the show otherwise.  Also, it's just not wonderful eating out gluten free.  It's doable and if you are just really hungry and need something to eat, fast food will work but it's not generally enjoyable.  Non-fast food at the bigger chains, most of that is great but we can't always afford slow food.  :-)

We sure have had a busy week!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wednesday, the 23rd.

Look how good my garden looks now, compared to how bad it looked the first few days.  We thought we could save these plants and we did.  I ate a salad this morning with a home grown tomato.  Yum.

In other news, this is a busy, busy week.  We've got a lot going on but most of it is good stuff, so we don't mind so much.  I had a great Mom's Night Out last night and got to reconnect with some people I hadn't seen in a while, plus the ones that I get to see quite often, but enjoy very much.  We ate at Qdoba which was pretty good, but the seats really aren't conducive to sitting for a long time and talking.  Before that we had gone to the salvage grocery store where I had picked up a ton of gluten free products, flour, cereal, cookies and baking mixes.  I'm still feeling kind of bad, but I am still in good spirits and that helps a lot.

A couple of really nice things happened yesterday.  The first is that the lady that is doing VBS for our church asked if she could use my art to decorate the building.  That was very flattering.  I have yet to go look at how it all looks hanging up, but hopefully will get time tomorrow.  Yesterday also my son got called into his supervisor's office at work and she told him that in August when he goes back to school they don't want him to resign, they want him to fill out a leave of absence form, so he can come right back to work whenever he's not in school.  How cool is that?  It might make up for the loss of his work study job at school.  Apparently the doctor he was assisting there gets new assistants every year to give more students a chance at a job.  My son is going back to school a bit early and will apply for others, but he might not get another one, so this will help.

Tonight we get to have dinner with my brother and his wonderful girlfriend and finally, for one of the first times this whole year, I do feel like celebrating a little bit.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

So, a ton of stuff.

For my Monday I got pretty much everything on my list done.  I called everyone I needed to call, cooked a bunch of food to get us through the next couple of days (I've started cooking big batches that we can all warm up whenever.  It's easier.), went to Walmart, took the library books back, turned in the 4H paperwork and went to my doctor's appointment.  I was supposed to go and look at a car, but my husband had something else he needed to do, so I took a nap.  I still feel bad and the doctor's office visit did not give me any immediate answers.  They did a bunch of labs and an electrocardiogram and will call me with the results.  Meanwhile, I still don't have any medicines and the only thing I can really do is just wait it out.  :-(

As to the pictures, the top one is a baby gift.  I framed it in pink.  The other is a map of Norway in the atlas.  My youngest son carries this atlas around reading it all the time.  He found a town called Arendale which he thought maybe was the location for Frozen, but I think that's spelled Arendelle, so probably not the same one.   Just thinking about this made us want to watch the movie again and so we did.   I love Olaf.   :-)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Trying to prioritize.

I need to get some things done today, the most important thing is I need to go to the doctor for this latest thing I have.  Then everything else will have to fall in place around that.  Also I have to postpone another appointment, find out when my mom's pain clinic appointment is and try to get everything else arranged around that for August and file 4H state fair paperwork if my kids want to sell things for the 4H Microbusiness Club, drop off the library books, mail some packages, cook meals for the next 3 days, contact a realtor about selling my mom's house, go pick up my mom's VA paperwork and go look at a car.

Over the weekend, I started feeling overwhelmed at not getting anything done and so despite having this illness whatever it may be with a fever of over 100 all weekend, I got groceries, cooked at least 1 full meal, went to walmart, got my son some socks that he needed (but didn't like and ended up giving to his younger brother), made a poster for VBS, went to church, picked up the fair entries (3 championship ribbons!) and took my aunt to visit my mom.  Sometimes the need to just check things off the list is overwhelming and I need to take advantage when it is, because sometimes I am just plain apathetic about it all.  :-P

As a bribe for the 4H fair entries, I told my daughter if she'd enter more of her crafts, I would enter one of mine and I won a red ribbon and I also won a cash prize of 4 dollars.  Fun!
The VBS poster.

My entry.

My temperature.  I'm a hottie.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Trying to figure out.

How to get through the week without a car.  As I may have mentioned, my husband is gone to work ALL the time now.  He went from being gone 4 days a week for about 12 hours to 5 days a week about 12 hours which really doesn't seem like that much of a change, but he's going in later, so he doesn't get home until about 7:00 p.m. most nights.  That makes it very difficult to share a car with him.  My son is working about 40 hours a week and generally leaves for work about the time I am getting finished with my job.  So I am trying to get to all my obligations without a vehicle.



It's frustrating.

My husband is shopping for a vehicle and he may buy one soon.  In the meantime, I may get the use of a vehicle without air conditioning, but as a menopausal female with a chronic infection (this is a long and recurrent theme on this blog and I don't want to get into it right now, but I reserve the right to whine about it.) and a constant, ongoing low grade fever, being without air conditioning is particularly difficult for me right now.  I'll take it though, if I can get some of these things on my list done.  I need to get some things done and crossed off.   I need to get my mom's VA benefits applied for again.  I need to get her car transferred into my son's name as we are buying it from her and I need to get her house appraised to sell.

Just feeling a bit overwhelmed today.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The low key summer continues.

Growing garden.

Lightning bugs.

Purple coneflower.

Walking to the mailbox.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Fair time!

It's county fair time so I woke the kids up early (for them) and took them to the county fair grounds to register their 4H crafts for this year.  My son entered a walking stick and a terrarium and my daughter entered a quilted bag, a pencil case, the big knitted afgan and a couple of crocheted wash cloths.  Trying to get them to agree to enter things this year was like pulling teeth, I have no idea why.  They were just reluctant.  They seem to be going through a reluctant to do anything kind of mood, which is no fun for those of us who live with them.  On the way up there, in my son's tiny car because my suburban sounds like it's got a wheel bearing going out, we said something that was hilarious and I said I was going to blog about it, but of course, we all promptly forgot it upon arriving home.  Sigh.

Now I need to make an appointment to get the car fixed and let my brother know I can't visit my mom today because both of our working vehicles will be at work with the men until later.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Kind of boring.

It's actually been a kind of boring couple of weeks in some ways.  We are not having summer adventures.  We haven't really been getting together with family as much as usual, I think.  I need to get my husband's family together before my oldest son goes back to school.  We got some of us together for Father's Day but we need to all get together and have one of our hilarious board game sessions.   Our pool is not up and we haven't been swimming.  We don't have a vacation planned, instead, we are going to pay to repair the vehicle of a stranger in another state ... anyway, money's kind of tight and we haven't been doing a whole lot.  For me, who was riding the up and down emotional roller coaster of middle age, this calm part is really kind of nice.  I think the kids are getting bored with it though.  Fortunately, we got together with our homeschool group family on Tuesday and planned some small adventures, some pedal boating, visiting a farm and some gym days.  Not much, but something to look forward to.  Some low key adventures.  It's nice to plan some things to look forward to after the year we have had.  I have also been doing a bit (okay, a lot) of art journaling and we have been doing some decluttering, trying to figure out a schedule of things that we like to do and things that we have to do on a regular basis, since all of our routines have gotten upset in this new normal, with my mom moving farther away, both my husband and I changing jobs, and everything else.

I did put my art journal pages up for sale, for 4 dollars each and several friends have bought some, which helped with my son's expenses going to Mississippi and court and all that.  They all say it is very pretty.  Of course I feel like they aren't all that good, but they have been well received and that's been kind of fun for me.  Who knows, if my son hadn't had the car accident, I might never have gotten the courage to sell them.

Monday, July 07, 2014

A little thought.

My summertime challenge is always to figure out what we are going to do homeschooling the next year.  I get more involved in the homeschooling in the summer than I do the rest of the year, choosing resources and implementing a schedule.  Then, I am a pretty hands off homeschooling mom.  I may have to get more involved in these last 2 years (sob!) because my daughter has been 'little mama"  since my youngest son's birth and has bossed him around for me and since we've been homeschooling, she's been my assistant teacher, basically making him do his work every day and checking up on him and now she has graduated and I am not sure what she is going to be doing this fall.  She's not either.  She may start some on-line college classes or she may take some time and work on writing her book.  She's been working on it for a couple of years between other things, but we might be able to give her the gift of some time to work on it, before we toss her out into the world.  She's not even 18 yet.  My oldest didn't start college until a year after he graduated from high school and that's not the end of the world.  He will finish college and move to graduate school at 23.

So anyway, back to the next 2 years with the youngest.  He is the most nontraditional learner of the three.  I have done some research and I believe the term for what my son is (not that he can be labeled exactly of course) is twice exceptional.  Actually, he's probably at least quadruply exceptional.  He's very smart, has a vocabulary that could put most college professors to shame, is very good at math, doing even very difficult problems without writing them down but he cannot spell and can barely write, despite trying a bunch of different spelling and writing programs.  I am not sure where to begin with him. 

Here's an example of an interaction with him that occured last night.  My daughter is reading our current book, something about time travel ...and one of the lines said something about the timbre of a character's voice.  My daughter didn't know how to pronounce, said timber? and paused and my son pronounced it perfectly.  So, after looking at me to make sure he was correct, she looked at him and said "How do you know that?"  He said, I was analyzing the syntax of what you were saying and that seemed like a likely word and then we discussed that timber and timbre are spelled very similarly and he probably got it from the fact that she said timber, but really he truly has absolutely no idea how either one of them is spelled, except maybe that they start with a T and that was evident on further questioning.  My question is how can he read so well and have no idea how anything, and I mean anything, is spelled?  Anyone have any clues?  Should we tackle the spelling and try to conquer it or should we bypass it with technology?  Also, the handwriting is an issue and the first thing anyone says is that he can type, but he really can't type much at all, because spelling becomes an issue then too. 

It's going to be interesting trying to figure out what to do. 

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Happy 5th of July. :-)

I forgot to blog on the fourth, so I didn't wish anyone a happy fourth and now it's too late, but have a happy fifth as part of the whole 3-day weekend thing.  :-)  My husband was off work yesterday, but my son and I did have to work.  When you work for a hospital as I do or a grocery store as he does, some of the smaller holidays, you just don't expect to get them off.   After work, I went to see my mom, who is doing okay.  The way our visits go has changed somewhat and she is becoming more peer dependent there at the facility, bonding with her peers and making friends, which I am all-for and very happy about.  She does still enjoy seeing me and we do talk about some of the same things over and over, but one of the concerns last night, was getting back to the group, which I had isolated her from so I could talk to her one-on-one.  I think that is a good thing.  I want what is best for her. 

Then, I came home for an evening of eating spaghetti and setting off fireworks with my family.  Fireworks aren't really my thing, so I watched a few and went in and kept the dogs company for the rest.  Freckles is terrified of fireworks, so I had to do a lot of comforting and she had to go with me while I was in the bathroom and even sat kind of behind the toilet for a while.  Poor kid. 

Anyway, now it is the fifth and I have some very, very difficult reports to transcribe, groceries to get and various other things to do.  I guess we are settling into our new, current normal?  I wonder how long this one will last?  Our son is going to go back to college early this year, so then we'll have to adjust back to the 4 of us, but hopefully mom is done moving for a while.  I hope so.  Also, now we are going to have to focus on selling her house, which I am extremely sad about, but what can I do?  :-(  Just suck it up and deal with it.    New normal. 

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Another summer cold.

This really has not been our summer.  (reminds me of the Friend's theme, "and it hasn't been your day, your week, your month or even your year...)   The pool's out.  This is the second summer cold that is going through the family.  It started yesterday with the younger 2 kids.  The court date is over and mom seems to be settling in, so the bigger things are better and it's just the small annoying little things that go on, so I guess that's okay.  The garden is growing.  I get to go see my peoples today even if I may have to leave some of the younger generation at home.  They are certainly old enough to do that and did I mention, I get to see my friends?  My fellow homeschooling moms have been such a help and such a support system to me.  I honestly don't know what I would have done without them.  One of them sent me this yesterday and I love it.

Tuesday, July 01, 2014


My son's court appearance went well.  He stated his case.  His car broke down so he borrowed his grandma's car to go back to school,  then grandma's health status changed and she had to go into assisted living and ended up changing addresses 3 times.  Meanwhile, her son and daughter tried to keep up with the address changes and the bills but this one bill for the car insurance slipped through without being paid, because of the address changes, etc. and it was just a mess.  Anyway, the judge basically said "235 dollars, pay by July 16" and then he said "Next."  After a little snafu with his debit card being accidentally deactivated and reactivated by phone, the fine is paid and he is coming home tomorrow. 


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