Saturday, February 23, 2008

Busy Bees With New Adventures And Loving It!

We've had a very successful week. We've really been trying to stick somewhat to our schedule without being so rigid it takes all of the fun out of everything. I am slowly but surely learning balance. That's my new mantra, "All in due time, and with appropriate balance." Lord, help us all. LOL.


We completed our writing assignment on To Kill a Mockingbird, much to Baby Boy's delight. The writing is his least favorite part of anything we do in our home school program. I keep explaining to him how wonderful and fulfilling it is to be able to express yourself clearly and artistically via the written word, but as of yet, he hasn't bought into it. Of course he's actually pretty good, so that frustrates me even more, but what are you going to do? As Moms we're trained to just wait until our young find their own way in life. I try to apply gentle pressure and guidance, and I hope the rest will work itself out.


Baby Boy learned some pretty impressive take down moves in tae kwon do this week. I have a little film, but it isn't of those moves. I usually try to get some photos or even a video or two on the "down low" so as not to interrupt the class. What you see here, is what transpires when a group of teenage boys realize they are being filmed. It's extra silly, so view at your own risk!



video



Somehow, we also did get to our art project this week. We actually finished the last in a 7 part series of lessons on Color Theory. This week we learned about shading with color. Of course you know I have photos. So without further ado, let me present to you . . .


. . . Shading With Color . . .


By Baby Boy


and


By Mom #1



I did promise Baby Boy that if/when we moved out of the sticks and closer to a town, which we have, we'd get out and do more things with other people. I'm a bit of a recluse and really like wearing pajamas, so that's a promise I will have to work to keep.


So, with that in mind, we tagged along with a homeschooling field trip group and saw a beautiful exhibit at a local art museum called The Virgin, Saints and Angels. If you know me at all, then you'll be aware that I don't really do groups, but since with this particular one I am able to pick and chose what I want to do buffet style instead of honoring a full-time, long-term commitment, then I feel somewhat safe. Also this is a nice inclusive group with no nasty discrimination against people of different religious beliefs, different races, different family lives, or any other differences that seem to reek havoc in our quest to find nice home-schooling families to socialize with. Afterwards we walked over to a social spot and Baby Boy played pool, air hockey, and bowled for a while with some of the other boys. It was a pretty good time. I think we'll have to give them another try in the near future.


We also attended a Barack Obama rally last night that lasted very late into the evening. His speech was so commanding and inspiring. There was music and dancing and a great time was had by all. I'm not going to post any political opinions here, as this isn't that kind of blog, but I did want Baby Boy to experience a little piece of real live history. Whether Barack wins or not, I think it's incredible that a black man has made it this far in the election for the president of the United States. I really want Baby Boy to understand that, when I tell him he can be anything in the world he wants to be, I mean anything. I want him to dream the kind of dreams that have no limits.


Well I rambled on much longer than I intended, as usual.


So, until next time. . .


Smooches!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Still Trying To Find The Groove, Getting Closer.

We've tried to adhere to something like a schedule this week.


We still have lots of settling in to do, but I think we're finding a little rhythm to go with the chaos of our lives. It's still very much a work in progress, but I think it'll have to do for now.


We did find time to watch our homeschool movie, To Kill a Mockingbird. I know most grownups have probably already seen it or at least read the book, myself . . . well . . . this was my first viewing. I was actually extremely impressed that a movie made back in the 60's had so much artistic integrity. Aside from the fact that the movie is very good, I love the opening credits and the interesting camera angles used to shoot the movie. It's not just your normal "head on" shots usually seen in older black and white movies. It may be a funny thing to notice, but with two budding amateur filmmakers in my home, it's impossible for some of it not to rub off on me. Also something else I found interesting was that the movie is almost entirely told from the children's point of view, particularly the daughter's. It is about a small town white attorney who has been appointed to defend a black man against the rape of a white woman. Instead of giving just the "token" defense usually given to accused blacks, he has decided to give the black man a real, thought-out, researched, top-notch defense. I don't want to give away too much by saying this isn't your usual race relations movie (Is a black person allowed to say that?), but an insightful look into the lives of the children of a man trying to do the right thing, and how the entire ordeal affects them. It's a definite "thumbs up." I highly recommend it.


Seeing movies isn't all we had time to do this week. Baby Boy had the chance to "bring home the bacon." Actually, he brought home the catfish on a little fishing trip with my niece and my dad.


Delicious!


And, of course, here are some photos . . . enjoy!



I love my niece, but if you can't take the heat . . .



But I don't want to be a pirate!



Get the hot grease ready!



. . . Until next time . . .



Smooches!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

My Niece Is A Superstar - And Here's Why . . .

If you've read this blog at all, you already know that my niece is just about my favorite person in the entire world. She has the kind of blind ambition, wholeheartedness, and lack of inhibition that I can only dream of growing up to achieve. I know for some it's just youth, but I wasn't like that when I was young. . . LOVE HER!



Anyway, as a for sure sign that my pitiful party was over, I got up early and got dressed and went to my niece's basketball game this morning. It was very early, actually way too early to be getting up on a Saturday morning, but I did it anyway out of pure principal. Baby Boy and Mom #2 were too busy shuckin' and jivin' to get ready in time, so I went at it alone.


They lost the game, but the beauty is in the PLAYING of the game. The girls are so incredible! They aren't afraid to run, jump, dive, duck or whatever it takes to get the job done. In a world of prissy make-up obsessed and boy-crazy pre-teen girls, it was just so refreshing to see.


Like I said, she's my hero. Brilliant and athletic, she's my kind of girl.


Ok, I know, it's enough already. I'm obviously blood-related to the child and heavily biased. But I speak the truth. ;-)


Here's some photos. . .


In the heat of the moment.


Supporting from the sidelines.


Superstar!


My niece and my sister (her mom).



Until next time. . .


Smooches!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

An explanation for my absence, and an update of sorts.

I know. The current state of this blog is so sad. There is nothing worse than a blogger who refuses to update. I'm so sorry, but it really could not be avoided.


Our family recently and unexpectedly had to move.


That's pretty much all I'm going to say on the subject because it's still very emotional for me. We moved from a very big beautiful place to a very small place. It is very nice, as Mom #2 would have nothing less, but it is not my old house.


I already know that a home is not the real estate but the sharing, love, commitment, and character of the family inside; but I still miss my old house.


That's why I've stayed off the blogs, message boards, and other technological outlets for a few weeks. I was hosting my own personal, pathetic, pitiful, emotional, broken-down, party for one - me.


But as of this moment . . . all of that is over!



I've decided to take this experience in stride. I've used the opportunity to de-clutter my home, my mind and my life. Unfortunately, I had to get rid of the “stigmata” in my mind before I could embrace and appreciate the de-cluttering process going on in the rest of my life. Now that I have stopped feeling sorry for myself and taken a few days to get things together, I have realized that it really isn't so bad. Now all involved will admit, it's not ideal, but it really isn't that bad. I’m not quite overjoyed yet, but I’ll settle for “not so bad" for right now and I’m sure the rest will come. . . with time. ;-)


So . . . Baby Boy has been having some life skills training and no traditional school work for the past few weeks. He has witnessed a lot of heated discussions, a lot of heart-filled apologies, a lot of packing, unpacking, organizing, reorganizing, frantic cleaning, and I’m sure plenty more that I’m forgetting to list.

Also, I now realize that I am so glad for Baby Boy's marital arts training. What a worthwhile investment. He’s strong as an ox and has unlimited energy. He actually likes showing off how much he can lift and carry. What did I do to deserve such a great son? I win! I win! I win!


Well, we’re going to take the rest of this week off and recuperate from all we’ve been through. We're definitely overdue for some positive family time. Next week I’m going to try to get back on my regular schedule, with some modifications, of course. ;-)


I’m going to try to stop by all of the wonderful blogs that I’ve been neglecting. I need to say to all who have emailed asking where I am and how I’m doing, thanks so much for your care and concern. I really LOVE the network of cyber-friends I have. You ladies are fabulous! I just wasn’t in a good place to respond. I try to keep my negative dew drops to myself so as not to poison the whole fountain, if you know what I mean. I have two military parents and stoic solidarity is one of my greatest and worst traits all wrapped into one.


But enough of that for now. . .


. . . until next time . . .



Smooches!

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