Sunday, July 29, 2012

Yaaaaay! The Olympics!

We love watching the Olympics here. Which is so funny because none of us are sports fans. Lol. At least, not in general. We like soccer of course, but aren't really prone to sitting around watching sports on TV.

Then every 4 years (we like the Winter Games, but not nearly as much as the Summer Games), there we are...acting like the face painted fans in the stands. :)

This year, we had a wonderful time watching the opening ceremonies with a great group of friends! Snacks, excited kiddos, TONS of laughter and a fabulous torch lighting. It was a fantastic evening and I'm so glad that were invited and were able to share in all of that excitement with everyone!

In years past, we would try to just catch everything when we could. This time around, we are putting our DVR to good use. I don't think it's stopped recording since Friday night, but at least we are catching most of what we want to see. We have been super thrilled to see a good bit of the Archery and the Fencing competitions so far. We don't usually get to see those, so that's cool.

Yesterday we had a wonderful time in Greenville with some more friends. We met up at a Red Robin, which my family has never eaten at before.

I hafta tell ya... BEST. BURGER. EVAR. Yep. EVAR is even better than EVER. :P

Last week my mom was up visiting for the week so our schedules were a little off, but it was a good visit! This week, I'm going to finish up my sister-in-law's baby shower invites, and get ready for my boys' party next Sunday. A pottery party...should be all kinds of fun!

The boys are going to remain working on their vocabulary. They've got some root word games to play, and they are using some special Olympic themed word lists to make online flashcards. I love technology. Really. :D

Now, I'm going to curl up in the family room and watch some swimming. Isn't it wonderful to see all of those cute guys in speedos inspiring athletes? ;)

I hope everyone has a good week. And can you believe it's about to be August already?? Geez....

Monday, July 23, 2012

Vocabulary fun...

This past week was good. Not stressful, and without a TON of stuff on our to-do lists. I went scrapping with the girls on Saturday and wrapped up my weekend with a Dragon*Con staff meeting and dinner at Steak N Shake yesterday! :D

For whatever reason, we are coming up on a period of time where every single weekend has something scheduled. It's fun, birthday parties, baby showers. But from today until Dragon*Con (Labor Day weekend), we don't have a weekend to ourselves. I'm also hand-making the invites for my sister-in-law's baby shower (I have another nephew coming in October!) and I should have had those done about a week ago, lol. Ah well. I always say I thrive on organized chaos. 

Hopefully this week will go well. Nothing major on our plates. I hope to finish those invites. I have to grocery shop, and those that know and love me know that in and of itself is a feat that may take the whole week. 

The boys are going to concentrate on some fun vocabulary stuff this week. I so love the websites and online resources I have found over the years. They can work on basically the same concept/lesson, but at their own grade level. It's fabulous! They have some matching definition activities they will work on, as well as some idiom games they are going to play.   

Idioms can be a lot of fun. Hopefully I can make them understand that idioms are phrases like "a dime a dozen" and "for Pete's sake." Idioms are NOT phrases like "bless your heart" or "well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit!" Heh. Southern slang really is a hoot. ;)

On a different, and more serious note, I would like to wrap this post up with asking everyone to keep the people in Aurora, Co in your thoughts and prayers. The movie theater tragedy was unfathomably awful. As someone who frequently goes with my family to the theater to escape reality for a couple of hours, I can't even begin to imagine what went through the minds of those unfortunate movie goers in those moments, and the pain and unbearable grief that those left behind are experiencing.  

I would also like to say that "The Joker" didn't kill anyone. A crazy person did. "Batman" wasn't involved. A crazy person was. Hollywood isn't to blame. A crazy person is. Just throwing that out there...

Saturday, July 14, 2012


A while back, I read a blog that had an occasionally random post. Rather than trying to weave everything together, they just made like a bullet list. I enjoyed reading it, and I even gave that a try on my own blog. It's been a while, but I think this week calls for a little random... :)

~ Today marks the one year anniversary of my mom's liver transplant! I can't believe it. Sometimes it feels like it's only been a few weeks! Yay for mommy! ;)

~ Even though I don't like to admit it, I am terrified of trying to get the boys through homeschool high school. TERROR-FIED.

~ I have 10 tattoos. All but two are generally visible.

~ This past week, the boys spent the week with my parents (they live a couple of hours away from us) and they had a GREAT week. My parents took the boys to an Amusement Center (arcade, laser tag, bumber cars, etc) and then my brother and sister-in-law took them and my nephew to see the new Spiderman movie. It was a big week!

~ The husband and I spent six hours watching Firefly one night this week. Yep. We are so badass when the kids are away.

~ I am unashamedly admitting that I have read the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. 

~ I don't like using conventional fraction lessons to help my boys with fractions. I like to use pizzas. And cookies. And recipes. :D

~ My boys want to get their ears pierced. 

~ We just found out that Billy Boyd (Pippin from LoTR) is going to be at Dragon*Con this year! We all had a little squee moment. :)

~ I loathe Reality TV. Can't. Stand. It. 

And one last little tidbit...every time I type/say the word "random," I immediately think of "RANDOM DANCING!" from iCarly. Ugh. :/

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Summer Learning Stuffs...

Before I jump into my blog post, I just hafta say that I had a fantastic Saturday morning! Lemme go back...

When the hubs and the eldest were coming back with dinner Friday night, they saw a little dog in the road. We live in the country so coyotes, larger animals and even hawks are serious concerns when it comes to smaller animals. The poor thing looked starved and like he had been that way for weeks. We were really surprised that a dog his size (small) had managed to survive out here long enough to look that way. The guys couldn't even imagine leaving him out there once they saw him, so in he came. Once in, we noticed that he was blind. If not completely, pretty severe. We gave him a comfy pillow, some water and some food. We kept an eye on him and decided that if he made it through the night, we would take him to the vet and foot the bill for whatever treatment he needed, or the hubs would stay there with him if the only option was putting him down.

Yesterday morning, he was still chilling and had eaten a little. So Walter and Bailey left for the vet. Braeden and I stayed here, hoping for good news and waiting on a phone call. When that call came, it was most emphatically NOT the call I was waiting on.

As soon as the vet saw the dog, she recognized him! He isn't starved or abandoned, but he is being treated for diabetes...which explains the lost vision and how thin he looks. He had obviously gotten away from his owners and coincidentally was scheduled for an appointment THAT MORNING for a check up on his diabetes. Knowing that he not only has a family, but a family that is willing to go through treating a dog with what could be a fairly debilitating illness (we have heard of many pet owners who, while sad, opt for euthanasia instead of treatment for things like that), was absolutely fantastic!

I cried. Bawled like a baby. Snot everywhere kinda bawled. Just made my day! :)

Okay, back to the blog post...

I know I've said before that we technically school year round, but I have also said that the summer months are usually lighter for us. So we aren't on a break, but we are taking it easy. They may work on their T4L a little sporadically, but the two subject areas that they have to work on every day are spelling and reading.

This summer, the spelling part of that has actually been cool for them. Using VSC has worked out wonderfully and they love that they can do so many different things, like take their spelling test online, without having to crack open a workbook. Some days, thanks to the handy dandy iPad app, they do their spelling and vocabulary while kicked back on the sofa. :D

For reading, they have both really tackled that with smiles this time around. Last summer, Bailey was reading voraciously while Braeden was looking at me like I had asked him to lick the floor of the bathroom anytime I asked him to pick up a book. :/ 

We knew about some reading programs that our local library did, and we knew about the one from Barnes and Noble, but a few weeks ago, I found a forum post highlighting some other free summer reading programs that we didn't know about. Ones that are great motivators, especially for my wee one (like the one at Chuck E Cheese)! While they have to do some reading on their own, as a rule, we don't mind finding programs like these that reward them for reading a little more than what we ask of them, lol.

If anyone knows of any more summer reading programs, please feel free to comment below and let me know! I don't know that there could be an instance where there were too many to choose from. :)

Outside of spelling and reading, the boys are going to work on archery and pottery. We found some traditional bows a couple of weeks ago at Academy Sports (they had a compound bow, but didn't like it), as well as a good target to shoot at. So far, this has been the most excited they have been to leave the comfort of the A/C for anything.

The pottery thing is something they have both asked about, so we have been checking into prices at a local place called Good Dirt. We are looking forward to trying our hand at this as a family, and I think the boys have even decided that they want a pottery party for their birthdays...Good Dirt offers parties where the kids can all come and get together and make something to take home. Nifty.

That's about it for our summer. At least that's what we know of. Things change all the time around here, so who knows what we will end up doing and working on.

Tell me...what are some of the things YOU do over the summer, to keep your kiddos' little minds active? :)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Dude. It's HOT!

Not like "wow, when I walk outside I sweat" kinda hot. I'm talking "wow, when I walk outside I imagine this is what it would feel like to walk right into hell" kinda hot. At one point yesterday, the van told us it was 112 degrees. Jaysus.
Speaking of yesterday...we took the boys to see Brave and we loved it! We had heard some mixed reviews about it, but we've been seeing the trailers for almost a year now and really didn't want to let any negative reviews prevent us from deciding for ourselves. I'm so glad we didn't! It was an absolutely beautiful movie, the soundtrack was great, it was funny and it was really nice to see a heroine that had some character and wasn't just all about finding her prince. Would highly recommend.

Friday, we got to spend the evening with the B's and H's, enjoying dinner and a fireworks show (holy clap, how is it time for the 4th already?!). We did what we always do each year...skipped the crowds at the lake and hung out in the pasture/field behind the lake. Heh. Country living. ;) We remembered bug spray this year though, so it worked out well, lol! We forgot our camera, but I took some shots with my phone...

It was a fun weekend, and we're glad we got to spend some time with friends!

This week, the boys are going to play around with the VSC app that we're beta testing. Bailey is still thrilled that the free hangman game he likes from the site is a part of the app. I'm hoping as it's tested more and released, that we'll see more games. Outside of the app, I think we are going to do some game play (Braeden is going to work with short vowel games, to help with his spelling. He sounds out and reads the words correctly, but is struggling with the spelling those short vowel sounds.), and some reading. Light week again. :)

Now, I'm off to try and tackle the 17 loads of laundry I have to do today. Ok, so it's more like 3 loads...but whatevs. Feels like 17. :P

Enjoy your Sunday and have a great week!!