Saturday, April 28, 2007

Happy Birthday to you, You live in a Zoo...

...You smell like a monkey, aaaaand you look like one too!  My boys love to sing that song for absolutely no reason.  Yesterday, however, it was finally applicable to my life-- it was MY BIRTHDAY!  And it was an absolutely LOVELY day at that! 

While David and I are generally not givers of trinkets or presents to each other (not for b-days, anniversary, Christmas, anything!), we do DO things together.

My dear husband actually arranged babysitting for us yesterday just so we could spend the day together.  In fact, our wonderful sitter was at home with the kidlets for 14 hours!  Yup, a whole entire day together!

How did we spend our day?

We met with our realtor to put an offer on a house (a story for another day).
Lunch at Fogo de Chao.
Looked at kitchen stuff at Lowe's (the house we want is a major fixer-upper...so we were dreaming!)
Quick stop at home (dear babysitter had been playing games with the boys all day, colored some eggs-- yes, after Easter, and even had 3 egg hunts with them).
Had a game night with a bunch of friends...at their house...sans kids.

All in all, a GREAT birthday.  So far, I actually like getting older!

Tomorrow we have church and then we will be heading to California to visit my brother and s-i-l... and Knott's Berry Farm, Legoland, and whatever other places suit our fancy.  I can't really think about enjoying it until after I'm done with laundry and packing and am actually sitting on the airplane, kwim?

Anyhow, I shall miss y'all and will do my best to catch up when I'm back in town.  In the meantime, please pray for safe travels for us and for God's Will to be done in the purchase of this new house.  (3+ acres, fully fenced, stocked pond-- with an island in the middle!, ONE story house, large rooms, beautiful old trees, decent street, not too far away from our current location, affordable fixer-upper...just what we're looking for...)  *sigh*  I'm so excited!

Before you bail, check out THIS
 interesting read from Suzanne's blog.  Similar to an article I linked to in my sidebar...but still very good. :-)  That is, if you are of the same educational persuasion as myself...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Blink and the Great Pencil Grip Giveaway

Today I learned to play BLINK! Wow, what a fun card game!!!  It really is the "fastest card game" in the world.  The box says ages 7 and up, but I played it with my 5yo and we both had a great time.  Seriously.  It is F-U-N and fast!  Takes about 2 minutes to play a game (or faster).  You can count it as your math or critical thinking for the day. :-)


Did y'all read The Homeschool Minute last week?  I really appreciated the handwriting theme...it is exactly what Dash has been struggling with this past year (okay, really since the very beginning of our homeschooling journey).  I never understood why his handwriting was bad, especially since he tried SO hard.  Tank, who is 5 years old, even has waaay better handwriting!  The tears, complaining, dawdling and whining were too much for us.  It made every day a misery...at least any day that required very minimal writing.

It took a lengthy but extremely interesting conversation with Nancy to realize that it all goes back to his grip.  His incorrect grip.  Since then, we've tried several different grips for his pencil to help retrain his hand and make a new (and proper) habit of holding his pencil correctly-- currently, the boy puts his thumb and THREE fingers onto his pencil.  Uhhh...son, that is why your hand is hurting!

Anyhow, the foam grip didn't work.  The triangle was uncomfortable.  And then Nancy recommended the Stetro Grips in the Homeschool Minute.  I cringed at the cost...especially the cost of shipping!  But desperate times call for desperate measures.  I ended up ordering the bag of 100.  Yup, 1-0-0.  After all, you never know when you might lose a few, need some for the next kid or (as in this case) have some friends that might like to try one before they order a bag of 100 and have to pay over $6 for shipping!  I must say, they are nice!  I really wish I had this a few years ago-- it totally makes sense and forces your hand to hold the pencil the right way.

So dear friends, if you have a child struggling with a proper pencil grip and would like to try this really cool pencil grip, just send me an e-mail with HSB pencil grip (or something similar) in the subject line, along with your full name and mailing address.  I will be more than happy to send you one or two grips in the mail, free of charge-- so long as you don't mind it coming in a generic, non-padded envelope.  Oh, and I guess this offer is good for a limited time, while supplies last, yada, yada, blah blah blah... Let me know if you need one or two.

Wow, this is the first school-ish post I've written in a very long time.  I should make this more of a habit, don't ya think?


Saturday, April 21, 2007

Taking things literally

I gave each of the boys their very own Nestle Crunch Bar as a token of mommy love.  As they were devouring their precious little treasures, they ran up to me.


Tank (grinning from ear to ear):  Hey mommy, we can spell "Hollywood"! 


(jumps up and down and then looks over at his co-conspirator)


Dash (ever so proudly):  H-O-L-L-Y-W-O-O-D!!!!!


Me: (staring at them looking very confused)


Tank:  That means we win $10,000!!!


Me:  Huh?


Tank:  Okay, do you think it will at least get us into the semi-finals?

They both stood there eagerly awaiting my answer.  A look of hope on their sweet, chocolate covered faces.  I, however, was still confused.


Then it hit me!  I looked at the wrapper and wouldn't you know it...  On the front of each wrapper it said:


Collect & Win!
American Idol
Spell GO TO HOLLYWOOD
and you could go to the FINALE!



Okay, now *I* was disappointed too!  It's hard to dash the dreams of such little guys, especially when it comes to feats of spelling.


Now I'm still trying to figure out where the $10,000 idea came into play...

Question:  How do you feel about easy money?

I have a friend who is dead set against it.  Personally, I don't like it much and think it doesn't do people much good, especially in the long-run.  Semi-easy money... that could be fun, no?  But in smaller amounts. 

Honestly, I would NEVER want to win the lottery!  Waaaay too much pressure and trust issues.  I have nothing to fear though since I have zero chances of winning.  Might as well go driving down the street throwing dollar bills out the window...


(And to those who choose to participate in said activities-- you know who you are-- this is not a rant or lecture personally directed towards you). :-)





 


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

We've been invaded

Aggghhhh... Blehhhhhh...  Strep has invaded my house.  We battled fevers last week with Dozer, flu for me this weekend, and then David got strep.  Then Dash.  Then Tank and Dozer.  Ick. 


But hooray for insurance, a great pediatrician that will see them right away and for drugs!  It's amazing that something that tastes like drinkable bubblegum can actually kill those little guys that make your whole throat swell up, ears ache and head want to explode.


Since we're still contagious and all, it was a nice family day outside today.  We didn't want to get the new babies, momma's and other kids at church sick.  So we stayed home and played outside.  Strange, huh?


But we're already feeling better and really enjoyed the comfortable 70 degree weather in the yard this afternoon.  Trimmed hedges, picked up branches, toys and debris were cleared from the yard and then we had a big giant burn pile.  Life is good! 


The boys also had fun catching and releasing toads.  Okay, releasing waaaay up in the air.  Okay, catching toads and throwing them back into the tiny pond thingy... then catching them again and throwing them again and again and... I don't know why they didn't hop away while they had a chance.


I guess it was also the first time that Dozer really saw an earthworm.  I was digging and was surprised by one on my hand.  Dozer was immediately running to see the cause for my "concern"-- er...my one jump and scream (notice the lack of the -ing at the end-- this means that I'm not afraid of them, just surprised...that's all).  Tank tried to catch it but it kept wiggling out of his hand.  Such SQUEALS of delight and joy ensued!  There is just something so supremely satisfying and endearing about listening to a 2 year old's squeals of delight, laughter and utter abandon.  I so wish there was a way you could capture that in a bottle-- or even just on video!!!  *sigh*  Why does it always disappear upon the production of a lens?


So that was my weekend and my day.  I should say it was terrible and horrible.  But it wasn't.  Well, Saturday night and Sunday were misery when I couldn't even lift up my head, but the rest was still good.  Nothing like being forced to stay home and be with my kids, instead of our usual running around and overcommitment!  I'm a weirdo, I admit it.  But maybe thinking about childish joy makes one wonky in the thinking department. 


(Which, dear ThinkingBlogger buddies, I thank you kindly for the awards!  I just cannot pass it along right now as it requires way too much thought that will surely overtax my gray matter. But I daresay that I will transfer said honor to others in the near future.)


On the agenda tomorrow: Possum Watch.  The boys found a child-size possum outside their window tonight.  They insist on lying wait for it tomorrow night.  I hope they just intend on watching, keeping a science notebook or just laughing at it.  Please oh please don't let them actually want to catch it or *gasp* keep it!


I'm off to deal with my allergies-- stuffy but runny nose.  What is the solution to such a horrid problem, you ask?  You know it without me even having to answer.  But since you must be insisting...it is looking like a walrus.


 


walrus

Friday, April 13, 2007

Friends or brothers?

My boys are currently taking a soccer class twice a week during the month of April.  On our first day of class, one of the other homeschooling mom's made an interesting comment.

She asked me which ones were my kids.  I pointed them out to her.  She then said Oh!  They're brothers?!  I thought they were friends!

Ummm...yes, they are brothers.  And YES, they are friends too.  I am so glad they don't have to choose-- they can be both!  I guess she saw them talking to each other, laughing and just playing together.  Imagine that...brothers getting along and seeking each other's company over everyone else.

I hope that this scene will be a normal part of our lives from now until the Lord comes back.  Just today, Tank fell asleep while we were driving.  He passed out and plopped his head sideways...leaning on his big brother's shoulder.  That's the way it should always be, right?  They should always be able to lean on and support each other.  Dash just smiled and said That's okay. He can lean on me.


(By the way, they have a very normal brother relationship that includes lots of competing and fighting and adventures...so it was encouraging to witness this moment of personal space violation that yielded no bad results!)

That's also how I feel about my own sisters and brother.  I am very blessed to have a close, special and FUN relationship with each of them!

I know not everyone has a sibling (my dh included), but the Bible speaks of this as well:

A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.  ~Proverbs 18:24

Pretty cool, huh?  As much as I love and am close to my family, I can count on JESUS even more! :-)



 

Monday, April 9, 2007

Time to Vote!!!

Hi friends!  It is time to vote for the 2006 HOMESCHOOL BLOG AWARDS!


There are so many great fellow HSB bloggers nominated in many of the categories.  I love how the site has been set up to where you can click on the blog name to visit the blog, click to vote, AND see the current status of voting.  Pretty cool, huh? 


I am also very humbled to announce that I have been nominated for a couple of categories myself:  Best Blog Design and Best Cyber-Buddy Blogger.  Thanks for thinking of me, friends!  As my dad would say, That is real neat. 


(and boy, do I feel like that is an understatement-- I'm really jumping up and down inside and grinning from ear to ear and thinking Wow, y'all really like me?!  But if I said that out loud y'all would realize how big of a dork I really am...so we'll just keep that to ourselves, okay?) 


I have something to 'fess up too.  I can't take credit for the blog design-- that was from the pure talent of Amber (click on the Amber's Heart of Art link on my sidebar).  But you can still vote for my site and she will get the credit-- it IS beautiful don't ya think?


As far as Cyber-Buddy Blogger, y'all have really been such a blessing to me!  I have been so encouraged, entertained and inspired by all of my very different friends here.  I wish we could all have a big party and get together at my house so we can laugh and learn together IRL.  That would be cool...but first I think I would need a bigger house... but then again, if you're in the neighborhood (or even my part of the state) I would love to meet for coffee, tea or just to chat!


Voting ends this Friday, so be sure to head on over there before the week is up!


Well, I guess that's all I have to say about that.  :-)





Friday, April 6, 2007

Monday, April 2, 2007

How do you like your hair?

QUESTION:


How do you like your hair?


ANSWERS:


Dash (7yo):  Short.  I want to be like daddy!!!  (yelled at the top of his lungs)


By the way, daddy is completely bald.  Shaved-head-shadow-hair bald (not quite the Mr. Clean cut...at least not yet!).


Tank (5yo):  Ummm...I wike it a wittle wong.
Me:  Why?
Tank:
  Because when something hits your head...wike this (proceeds to pound his head with his fist)... then it doesn't hurt as much.  It kinda bounces off wike this!  (couple more pounds for emphasis).
Me:  Okay.  That makes complete sense.
Tank:  Yaaaah.


Perhaps he tested his new hair helmet a little too much today... Anyone have a clue as to when he should stop having this super-cute-very-unique-and-high-pitched-voice?  It's great being able to hear him coming from 10 miles away and all, but...when should I start thinking about saying goodbye to that sweet, piercing voice that can't ever say the "L" sound?



***


PS  Have you submitted your nominations for the Homeschool Blog Awards yet?  Some of our HSB buddies have already been nominated.  Better hurry, nominating ends on April 6th!  I've already made some of my choices...and it hasn't been easy!


PPS    I also have a <a href=http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/babycatcher> new friend </a> that will be pulling her kidlets out of private school very soon!  Please stop by her blog and say hi.  I'm sure she would love the encouragement and any advice that y'all might have for someone that has to DE-school her kids first.


PPPS  Check out <a href=http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/chickadee/307219> CHICKADEE'S </a> thought-provoking and completely encouraging post entitled "A Homemaker".


PPPPS  While I'm sending you around the blogosphere, <a href=http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/underdog/303339> UNDERDOG </a> is a pretty funny character as well.  I really liked his post entitled "Thump, thump".


PPPPPS  Is there a rule or limitation to the number of post's in a postscript?  Eventually, it just makes me look like I'm sticking my tongue out at y'all...and that would not be using good manners. 


Marsha :-)