Sunday, July 31, 2016

Good news.

My daughter got a job!  She will be working in an afterschool program, 3 hours or so in the afternoon.  It has paid time off and paid training and she will have summers off so she should still have plenty of time to work on her novel, as well as some work experience and spending money.  It's exciting.  She also opened her first checking account this week and her dad is now starting to look for her a car.  :-)  Since we finished homeschooling her 2 years ago, she's been kind of a homebody, so this makes me feel good.  I think she will like it and the person she will be working most closely with is another homeschooling mom.

My son and his girlfriend are coming this week for a visit and we hope to get to visit a bunch before either my new job or my daughter's new job actually start.  We're not sure when either one of them will be because we will both be working with children and so we both need to have a background check done.  It's a good thing, but this time of the year I am told it takes a while.  I'm hoping not to have to start at all until my son's visit is over.  I want to spend as much time as possible visiting and enjoying them.

We just finished doing the crafts at VBS this past week and then yesterday we went to the book launch party for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at the library so I'll share some pictures of those things.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Homeschooling ... don't make it harder than it has to be.

First, go here and look at the tab on the right that says "My State" Home School Legal Defense Association

Look for the laws in your state.   Then click on "Support Groups" to find a group near you.  Those people will hold your hands while you walk through the beginning and hopefully, graduating phases of homeschooling.   Our homeschool groups have been wonderful.  We've been members of 3 over the years.  

To shop for curriculum, I recommend Rainbow Resource,   There are also free resources just about everywhere, most notably Easy Peasy Homeschool which tells you what to do, each day.  

So do the bare minimum that your state requires, join a support group, take a ton of field trips and most of all, HAVE FUN!

Homeschooling is the BEST.

4H adventures, winning prizes for art, setting pigeons free to fly home, holding a gecko and a baby pigeon.

Kayaking.  This was a field trip.

Mammoth cave.  Field trip. 

Doing algebra at the kitchen table.

Learning to run a small business through 4H. 

Louisville Water Plant - Field trip. 

Lincoln museum, field trip. 

So, for the only state I have experience with, Kentucky, there are 4 steps.
1.  Notify the local school district department of pupil personnel with a letter of intent to homeschool.
2.  Get a curriculum that covers the basics.
3. Do it with your students 170 days per year.
4.  Keep reasonable records of work.  (This is where some people go too crazy.  Most of the time, in Kentucky nobody is going to check these, overall, they seem to trust us to do what we need to do. This may change in the future.  I know we have people at HSLDA working to keep homeschooling legal in all 50 states. Don't work too hard on the  records part, just keep very basic records.)

Start again the following July/August with the letter of intent and repeat until your child turns 18.  

I'd add another step, HAVE FUN.   

Bacon Rules.

If we have bought raw bacon and you want some, you must cook enough for everyone because the smell of frying bacon will drive everyone crazy.

However, if we have bought precooked bacon and you want to put a couple of pieces in the microwave and make a BLT, that's okay.

We pretty much only buy the precooked bacon when it's the season for home grown tomatoes, which it is now.  Thank goodness.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

July winding down.

We're gearing up for VBS at our church.  The kids and I are helping this year.  I've always worked and haven't helped much in the past, so this is different for me.  I'm doing arts and crafts.  At first I was very nervous, but I think I have a plan now.  My daughter is going to help me, so that helps.  Next week my son and his girlfriend will be here (Yay!) and then the following week, I may start a new job.  I haven't got the final word yet, but I had an interview and they really made it sound like they were going to hire me.  If I do get it, I'll be a head start teacher, despite my cynicism about preschool being effective.  Oh well.  I'll just keep that to myself.  I also may have a lead on another job which I am going to try and talk my daughter into taking.  It's also working with preschoolers but is part time, just afterschool hours and I think it might be a good first job for her.

 Anyway, here are some pictures from this week, Cosmo sleeping, some art I have done, a house from the Homerama new home tour event my daughter and I went to and a strange looking dragonfly that's been hanging out around our back door.  I think we have more dragonflies this year than usual, as I am seeing them all the time.  It may just be because when I am outside, I'm usually in the pool.  :-)   

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Life is going on.

My daughter made this apple dishcloth for the store where we sell our crafts.  She cleared 165 dollars last month.  I cleared 8.  Since I'm doing this for her to have some income, get some cashier experience and be comfortable in a working environment, it's a very good thing, no matter how little I personally make.   

I took these from the pool this past Sunday.  It was a beautiful day and the view from the pool is beautiful and my husband keeps the pool water so clear, it's wonderful.  I really appreciate it.  

We worked on our table in the store, trying to make it more vertical.  I think it looks pretty good.

Life is going on.  My son said that his first few weeks of adulthood did not go well and I agree.  He's had a hard time.  First my mom's illness, death and funeral and then our dog Lucy had to be put down this week.  She was falling and stumbling and finally was unable to walk, just lying by the road.  It was very hard on my son, but he lifted her into the car and carried her into the vet's office for me.  We're trying to look forward to better times.  I scheduled a board game party for us at the library, our oldest son and his girlfriend are going to visit in a few weeks, we're planning a trip to a museum while they are here and a homeschool group reunion and in November, a family vacation when we meet halfway to spend some time with my son, his girlfriend and her parents.  Today, I planted some bulbs a friend gave me, in lieu of flowers at my mom's funeral.  Planting flowers is a way to invest in the future.   The world doesn't stop.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Focusing on lists.

I've been kind of numb since mom got really sick and we knew the end was near.  I am not sure when the numbness is going to pass.  It's very weird.  I assume this is within the normal reaction of grief for some of us.  I'm not medicating but I am watching a ton of TV and doing a ton of art, also trying to keep busy by getting things done.  I haven't really felt like cooking (which is something I went through after my dad passed away too), but I have been doing some cleaning.  I haven't got my nerve up to go through the piles of mom's things lying around the house and I don't know when I will be able to do that.  We may have to live with them for a while.  Meanwhile, I am doing things like looking for a job, washing dishes, exercising, grocery shopping, taking people to the doctor, etc.  Anything to keep busy.  So today, I have 7 things on my list and I am going to focus on that.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

One of those days.

The watermelon fell out of the fridge onto my sore foot and burst.  I was holding one of the new kittens when my daughter let Cosmo out of her room and he came running and the kitten scratched me all up and down my arm.  I dropped a cup, a knife and a bowl while washing dishes.  I got an email telling me I didn't get the job I thought I would really like.   The flowers are dying and the funeral home called and said the death certificates are ready for me to pick them up.  :-(

On the brighter side, it's not raining (yet) and I get to see a dear friend tonight, none of the dishes broke and the knife didn't stab into my foot this time when I dropped it.  Also, I didn't cut myself cutting up the watermelon, which is kind of a miracle.  

Monday, July 04, 2016

Trying to figure out what to do next.

Since I lost my job in March, with mom's health going so much downhill starting about the same time, I had been spending 20-30 hours a week on her care and basically all of the rest of the time worrying about her health.  So now, I am not a medical transcriptionist, I am not an alzheimer's caregiver, I am not a homeschooling mom .... it's weird.  The last few days, since the funeral, I have been concentrating on writing the huge amount of thank you notes to our wonderful family and friends and now that that is done, at some point, I am going to need to figure out what to do with the rest of my life.  I know some things I want to do but they are probably not financial possibilities.

What to do, what to do.

Meanwhile, I'll share one thing we did this week.  We got kittens, a boy and a girl, who at this time remain nameless.  If the kids don't hurry and name them, I am going to name them Ziggy and Zazzles.  Maybe.  Anyway, they're cute and a fun distraction from the seriousness our lives have been recently.


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