Saturday, November 11, 2006

Another weird craft site

Holy buckets, I just cannot imagine what people are thinking.

I thought the tampon crafts were bad enough, click here and you can learn to make maxi-pad slippers.

Good grief.

Perhaps I could make a pair and give then to our "crotchety" old neighbor across the street for Christmas. he he

Friday, November 10, 2006

The Almost-Perfect Day

Today is a day I will remember. It really was the almost-perfect homeschool day.

Thursday night, my insomnia had kicked in. Even though I had taken my Ambien, I still could not sleep. My husband was snoring. He was crossing the invisible line and was partly on my side of the bed. I just had to remove myself and go to the couch. Feather pillow, DVD of Brokeback Mountain and Stop Smoking book in tow, I trapsed off to the living room. I made myself a bowl of popcorn, poured myself a Diet Rite, hit the play button, and snuggled in on the couch with my super-soft Biederlak blanket, affectionately called the fuzzy, my feather pillow, two cats. The dog would have crawled up with us as well, but there wasn't room. Instead, he laid down right next to me.

The movie started, and I just closed my eyes and soaked in the beautiful music. I need to buy the soundtrack because I love that music. In fact, that's the only reason I put the movie on. I read a few chapters of my Stop Smoking book. I have never, in my life, taken so long to read a book. I think that is a sign of a true nicotine addict.

Anyway, with a full tummy, a good movie, and all those critters, I finally drifted off. The last time I looked at the clock it was four in the morning.

I awoke to the sounds of my husband turning the television off, then he gently tucked me in. I was aware of him, but didn't speak. I just enjoyed his gentle nature, the softness of the blanket and feather pillow.

A little while later I awoke to the sounds of Thomas's voice. I could hear Spongebob on the TV as well. "Mom, it's time to get up," he said softly. I grunted. I opened my eyes and found my beautiful son sitting on the loveseat across from me. I looked closely and he had his spelling book, his vocabulary book, his logic book, and his favorite of all, the nonfiction reading book. He was over there doing work on his own.

When he saw that my eyes were open, in a bright and cheery tone, he said, "Good morning! Dad got me up before he left for work. Mom, I have showered, had my breakfast and done a lot of school on my own. I figured you must have had a bad night so I decided to let you sleep."

What a sweet kid! I couldn't help but smile at that. I got up, got some coffee in my system, showered, and when I was finally coherent, Thomas was done with the majority of his work.

At this point I realized the poor dog had not been outside yet. Just as I was starting out the door, the phone rang. My husband asked me what I thought of the great outdoors this morning. Oh my gosh, thinking quick, I said that it was pretty. Running for the window, I discovered about five inches of snow. A beautiful snow it was, too. The sky was gray, but the snow was gleaming white and it was reflecting the light so that it was very bright out. It was a picture-perfect snow. Heavy, clinging to plants, trees, shrubs. Ah. It was still snowing as well, the great big fluffy white snowflakes.

After that, we set up my boom box in the living room and put in our Story of the World disk. We listened for about an hour. We looked at books that corresponded with our CD as it played. We snuggled for awhile in the chair, then Thomas moved to the floor and listened while he played with his legos.

We would pause the CD and he would ask questions, many of which I didn't know the answer to. We would get off track and discuss other things. We kept catching each other's glance and then smiling.

It was perfect. A morning filled with love.

After lunch we decided we'd visit the library. I had a great big list of books I wanted to get on the history topic we were studying. I was anxious to get to the library then get home so we could continue our lovely day. I was so sad when we got to the library and I learned it was closed for the weekend for Veteran's day! (Happy Veteran's day to all the vets out there -- and thank you!!!)

Not wanting to put a damper on our now almost-perfect day, we decided to go shopping. We don't go shopping during school hours, ever. We both just felt the need to not go home empty handed immediately, so I made the exception this one time.

Not wanting to go to a mart store, and because we were downtown, the only store that was of any interest at all was the Salvation Army. So off we went. They had a huge Christmas display set up. We were amazed at all the cheap artificial trees they had! They were in great condition, too. Thomas and I laughed as we came up with a brilliant idea. We decided that we should buy one of those trees because they were already assembled, take it home, and use it. Then after Christmas, we could take it apart, put it in a garbage bag, donate it back to the Salvation Army. Then we could repeat the process next year. That way we wouldn't have to put the tree together every year, our least favorite part of decorating for the holidays. $15 for a beautiful six-foot tree.

It was a good idea, but I didn't want to spend $15 and I knew my husband wouldn't be too keen on that. We left the tree, but we did come home with a Classical Christmas CD, with all our classical favorites. $1. Not a scratch on it. I also picked up one book for Thomas, My Side of the Mountain for a quarter.

At the register we got "the question." An old, gray-haired, stern-looking lady asked, "Why aren't you in school?" Thomas hesitated. I piped in and said we're done with school, we homeschool. I was expected a lecture, because there was a group of senior women gathered at the register, you know, the kind that appear to be judgmental. Well, I was the only one being judgmental. They were all very nice. The one I feared the most smiled and told us her niece homeschooled all six of her children. Whew. We didn't have to defend ourselves.

After that we came home. We shoveled the driveway, and I didn't even care that public school was not quite over. Thomas is a lot stronger this winter and he did an excellent job yielding his shovel. I think he was surprised at how heavy the snow was, though.

Thomas is now in the back building a snow fort. I stood at the window, sipping my hot chocolate, watching him.

Yes, today was a warm-feel-good-fuzzy loving, learn-and-absorb-a-great-deal kind of day.

A day I'll always remember.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

What day is it?

I am so lost. It is Wednesday, right?

Monday afternoon I started not feeling well. I had two meetings to attend Monday evening and luckily I felt better during the meetings. However, when I got home, I was almost out of it.

I have this recurrent pain in my abdomen. I have had it for years. I have no clue what it is. The only thing the doctor did was give me an anti-spasmodic drug for when the pain hits. Well, I haven't been to the doctor and my prescription ran out.

Aside from not feeling well, that pain hit. An Intestinal bug and that pain thing. Ugh.

Tuesday I was sick, sick, sick. I was worried I wouldn't be able to vote, but I made it. I jumped in the shower, threw sweats on, looked like a piece of work because I didn't do my hair, didn't put makeup on, didn't even care. I wore flipflops. In Minnesota. In November. DH drove and we went and voted. It took me about ten minutes, even though I knew how I was voting. I was so shaky that I kept resting my head on the table.

We always take Thomas with us to vote. I think it's very important. The place was packed and he was the only child there. The volunteers were very kind to him and chatted with him. They also gave him an "I voted" sticker.

I got yelled at by DH because we needed a gallon of milk and DH didn't want to stop and get it. Oh well. He did. He survived. Like it's my fault I'm sick and didn't feel up to getting a gallon of milk earlier.

When we got home, I passed out on the couch.

The worst thing about Tuesday was not that I was sick. Rather, it was my husband. He's been a pita lately. He knew I was sick. He also knows that when I'm sick, I gather up a bunch of work for Thomas to do independently (usually in bed next to me) and he will do it. I told DH before he left for work NOT to call home that morning because I needed my rest. I had been up ALL night long. So at 9 am the phone rings. It was my husband. He says, "It's 9, you need to get up out of bed now and do school."

I was livid. It was just the lack of respect that annoyed the h-e-double toothpicks out of me.

Last night I still was sick. Life goes on for a mom, sick or not. I did three loads of laundry, cooked a light supper, organized some schoolwork, checked email, surfed, then passed out on the couch again.

Today wasn't much better. I cancelled our dentist appointments for this afternoon. It was in the 70s -- in November -- in Minnesota -- and we were stuck inside. My dear, sweet husband startled us while we were doing pajama school at the table. He came home at 11. Seems he was sick, too.

I have always been one to admit my weaknesses. I am a whiner when I'm sick. My DH is not. Atypical, because supposedly it is the other way around, the men whine and the women endure. I didn't whine this time. Nor did DH. However, after Thomas completed his best ever narrative writing today, I woke sleeping beauty on the couch and had him read it. He knew what I was doing. Payback. He was gracious, told Thomas what a fantastic job he did, and he gave me the look. You know, that look of guilt. His eyes said sorry I was such an a$$.

This evening I was going over all of Thomas's work from today. He had an "on" day, his work was outstanding. It took me back to when I was a kid. When there was tension in the air between mom and dad, I was always on my BEST behavior. While DH and I weren't fighting, I'm sure Thomas picked up on the tension that was there. I wonder if that's why he had such a fantastic day today.

I think our tension is gone now. We were out of everything (but milk) and I had to go to the store tonight. I came home with $125 worth of groceries, so exhausted I didn't think I'd be able to put stuff up. Surprisingly, even though it was after DH's bedtime, he met me at the car, brought all the groceries and put them up. Okay, so he's officially forgiven now.


I think it's Wednesday. I need to snap out of my funk and get with it.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Impatiently Waiting

First and foremost, I'm waiting for my sleeping pills to kick in. It's close, but not quite there yet.

Secondly, I have Pete's Pond up on my husband's computer. I'm waiting for something other than birds to appear. I finally downloaded the real player thing-a-ma-bob that we needed to watch, so we just started viewing this weekend. We've seen some type of antelope, and lots of 'em, and two ostriches. I want to see an elephant. I can see becoming addicted to this, because it is calm, peaceful and relaxing to watch. Exciting when a critter comes walking by, too.

I'm waiting for tomorrow morning to come. I want DH to go to work. He was rather, uhm, grumpy this weekend, bless his little pea-picking heart.

I'm also waiting to find out WHY our Taco Bell closed. About five years back, a Pizza Hut/Taco Bell combo was built at a car wash. I love both Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, but when I'm on Weight Watchers, I can actually eat well at Taco Bell without guilt. When I'm not, I eat even better. My husband was on dinner duty tonight and he drove out to Taco Bell to pick something up. When he walked in empty handed, I nearly cried. Pizza Hut is still open, and that's what we ended up eating tonight. Now my DH is sad for me, but happy for him because when we get Mexican takeout, he prefers Taco John's. I'll eat there, and for Pete's sake, I *should* eat there because I did grow up in Cheyenne, Wyoming, home of the original Taco John's, but it just isn't Taco Bell. TB is better.

I'm waiting to start school. I puttered around all weekend organizing, going through books, correlating, etc. We've been doing Story of the World Medieval times, but we kind of forgot to do it the past two weeks. I was getting out all my medieval resources and actually got excited. I can honestly say that I did NOT learn any of that in my public school experience. I learned more when I toured 7 European countries in 35 days back in the '80s.

I questioned Thomas tonight as we were eating pizza. We had done the first three chapters of SOTWII. I asked him who the Celts were. Wow, he answered. I asked him about Beowulf. Again, he answered. He talked about the Romans without my asking. Okay, he's retaining.

This year I decided that because we usually use the CDs in the car, that I wouldn't buy the book. We have the CDs and the activity book. I don't like the activity book except for their book selections. Anyway, that was a huge mistake on my part because I don't know this time period and it's faster for me to read than it is to listen to a CD to know what to plan ahead for. I may, gulp, order the book tomorrow. I wish our library had it, darn it.

It's really funny because we had Thomas tested by the gifted educational psychologist specialist. She was a lovely woman. She told us that Thomas would not be an auditory learner in any respect, especially because he has CAPD -- Central Auditory Processing Disorder. She said he was a conceptual learner. Funny things is, Thomas is a superb auditory learner. That's how he learns best.

As a mom, you should always trust your heart, and follow your gut instincts when it comes to your child. You know what experts, well-informed relatives, and friends don't: You know your child inside and out.

I have a good kid and through homeschool his self-esteem has soared, he is happy, joyous, and perfect.

So I'm waiting for Monday morning, so we can get our week off to a good start. I'm waiting for my fantastic good-morning hug I always get.

Now I'm going to bed because my wait is over, the pills have kicked in.