Sunday, December 30, 2012


We had a great Christmas! Enjoyed time with family and friends, the boys had was all good.

Until we all got the plague.

Plague may be a strong word, but that's definitely what we feel like we have. Bailey woke up on Christmas morning with a scratchy throat and just feeling "off." By Wednesday, he was coughing and running a fever. Wednesday evening, Braeden was in tears because he hurt "everywhere." And by Thursday, the hubs and I joined the party. We are still coughing, sneezing, blowing noses, running fevers and moaning about our "code milky green" (BBT reference, lol).

On one hand, dear sweet baby Jesus does this suck. On the other hand, we are keeping our fingers crossed that since we all got it at the same time, that once it's gone, it's gone and it won't be hanging around.

Needless to say, not a lot was done with school last week. Or anything else for that matter. :/

This week, I will try to get them to work on the spelling printables that I had planned for last week. But I will switch the Christmas word lists with New Year's Eve and New Year's Day word lists. I will of course, let them play games on the educational web sites and apps that we know and love. Braeden is working on putting words in ABC order and Bailey has found some art games he likes. That will have to be enough for now...

I start the tax thing officially full time on Thursday, so we are going to be working out our schedules and routines for the immediate future. I am in a different office now, on my own, and I'm not sure how that's going to go. I'm worried about being "in charge" (you know me...responsibility shirker extraordinaire), but I'm also hopeful that I will stay busy enough that my days come and go quicker, lol.

I do have holiday photos to post. But no, I haven't even dumped them from the camera yet. I hope to give that another go in the next couple of days.

For now, I'm off to cuddle with that bottle of DayQuil I've been spending so much time with lately.

Wishing you all a wonderful, happy, safe, exciting and blessed New Year! :)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

So this is Christmas...

I do love that song. :)

Really, really, REALLY can't believe Christmas is upon us already. For the boys, December is the s-l-o-w-e-s-t month EVER. For the hubs and I, we feel like we just made it through August. Lol.

This weekend saw our first family gatherings. Friday evening was spent with one of my oldest and dearest friends, and her family. Saturday afternoon we spent with my family and then Saturday evening, we got to hang with the hubs' family. Because of a wonky work schedule, we didn't get to have the whole weekend with everyone, so we were squeezing a lot into a small time frame. But we did it, and everyone had a great time! And, *some* time is better than *no* time. So, we're good.

I do have pictures, but I haven't had time to catch my breath, much less try and sort through photos. Since we will be taking more pictures tomorrow and Tuesday, I will just wait and do one big Christmas photo post. :)

Tomorrow we will have dinner with my grandmother, then Tuesday morning will be spent with just the four of us. We love that time. Walter reads the Christmas story from the Bible (Yeah, we're heathens. But we are Christian heathens -heehee-, so it's important to have a few moments where our family focuses on WHY we celebrate the holiday before we get all excited about the gifts), then we see what Santa brought all of us! After our family time, we head over to Tracy's on Christmas afternoon. It's become a tradition, and one that we very much look forward to. One last hurrah with gifts, then board games! So much fun! :)

The boys are still on their break. Or as we have come to call it, their "90% break." Lol. Since I won't let them let go of reading or spelling, they don't want to call it "a break." They crack me up. I will make some spelling printables with some of the holiday word lists on SpellingCity. That knocks out spelling and handwriting, so yay for multi-tasking. Other than that, I don't know that they will do too much in the way of schoolin'.

As January draws near, Bailey will start working with Time4Writing again. That's nice. The online homework help he gets from those courses are a teeny tiny burden I can remove from the hubs while I'm at the tax office. Braeden's normal grade level work isn't so intensive, and believe it or not, Bailey likes to help him when he can. So that's even more that Walter doesn't have to worry about. Fortunately, tax time is relatively short for me; about 5-6 weeks. That's good. While I enjoy the extra money, the less time away from our routine, the better.

Okey dokey. I still have to presents to wrap and sleep to catch up on. And Christmas movies to watch for the _____th time. :D

Wishing you and yours a very, very, merry MERRY Christmas!!!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

What a week...

As with every other sane person on the planet, my heart aches for those in Newtown, CT. I had to work at the tax office on Friday, and I wasn't at home when I heard the news. I was horrified and sad and wanting to be at home with my boys SO bad! When I came home that evening, it was all I could do not to knock them down while trying to get my arms around them.

I was even more horrified as the weekend progressed. The losses were all so tragic, but what really horrified me was the media's disjointed effort at staying on top of the story. Things were said, then retracted. Every news outlet had a different take (his mom was a teacher, no wait she wasn't) and it was just too much. Personally, I don't think the shooter's name should have ever been mentioned. Why? Why glorify evil? Why make it so every other person who wants to inflict harm and be remembered as a monster has something to work towards? Just... Ugh...

I think what was worse than trying to make sense out the news stories, was trying to avoid all of the political crap on social networks. Really? I applaud that people can stand so vehemently behind something they believe in or don't believe in. But really? You couldn't wait a few days before you started your "screw the NRA" or "screw the liberals" tirades?? GAH! Instead of sharing photos blaming guns, or instead of posting a status that proclaims you armed and ready...why not instead share the names of those innocent lives that were lost? Share THAT. So that everyone has a name, and a family, to keep in their thoughts and prayers. :(

Ok. So beyond that...

Our week was alright. Still on our holiday break, but not having any extra time to get everything ready for Christmas, lol. I'm still trying to finish my Christmas cards. I should have those done and sent out tomorrow or Tuesday, but there's nothing like a last minute greeting, huh? :/

Bailey completed and turned in his first 4-H Junior Portfolio and he's ready for the next step in his DPA. Yay!

This week will see a 4-H Christmas party and our celebration with family over the weekend. Since we live a couple of hours away, and the hubs still has a 5 day work week (he can have Christmas Day off, but he will have to make it up on a weekend day either before or after), we are going down over the weekend. Of course, we are all looking forward to that.

On the learnin' front, the boys don't have a lot to work on. Spelling as usual. But since they can access their spelling curriculum and spelling games on their iPad app, they don't mind. With Bailey constantly working on his creative writing stuff, they are finding themselves interested in synonyms. At least interested at the moment. Heh. Anyway, they can play some synonym games this week while I'm running around like crazy.

Oh, we did see The Hobbit yesterday! We all loved it! The hubs and Bailey said they added A LOT to the film that wasn't in the book, and while it didn't make them like the movie did leave them wondering why, lol.

Hope you all have a great week. Please keep those in Newtown in your thoughts and prayers.

Monday, December 10, 2012

A Parade and a Play...

Last week was good. We had a lot of fun throughout the week, getting ready for Christmas. We did a little shopping, and a little decorating. On Thursday evening we went to a local Christmas parade. This is the 2nd year that the boys have been in this play with their Master's Academy group, and like last year, they had a wonderful time!

I love their hats. :)

The theme for the parade this year was A Charlie Brown Christmas. 

On Friday, we went to see A Christmas Carol. A live production put on by a local theatre company, Rose of Athens Theatre. I can't tell you the last time I had been to a play that my kiddos weren't in, lol. It was absolutely fantastic and we all enjoyed ourselves! I took the boys and my grandmother, and we met up with Tracy, her boys and her mom. After the play, we all did Chinese for lunch together. That was followed by a little shopping time with my grandmother. A super way to spend my Friday!

The cast doing their "talk back" after the show.

Over the weekend, our friend Brad came down from NC. He came bearing Christmas gifts, which was supafun. ;) He had some great gifts for the hubs, and the boys. But the bestest gifts? They were mine! No, really. Mine were the best. Don't believe me? Take a look:

From left to right; Christopher Eccleston as The Ninth Doctor, David Tennant as The Tenth Doctor, Matt Smith as The Eleventh Doctor, Nathan Fillion as Malcolm Reynolds (also affectionately known as Cap'n Tightpants!).  
Told you. Bestest.

The hubs commissioned these, so to speak, from Brad and it was a complete surprise to me. Our family loves art, of all varieties, and we are so lucky to have someone in our lives that's all artisty-like. :D

As a side note... here's a little plug for Brad. And my husband. They are collaborators on a project called Southern Fried Inkslingers. Brad slings ink as an artist, and the hubs slings ink as a writer. Head over to their site, where you can check out some of Brad's work, as well as my husbands. Also, if you aren't easily offended and appreciate a weird sense of humor, you can listen to their podcast where they talk to other inkslingers (or those that support the inkslinging, lol).

Okey dokey. Back to me. Heh.

This week I will continue working on my Christmas cards. No, I haven't finished them yet. Ugh. The boys are going to work more on their room, and on their Christmas wish lists. They don't have a lot to ask for (thankfully they don't want every thing they see), but we are making them write out their list. Not type out their list. Write it. Which is probably why they don't have a lot to ask for. Haha.

I have discovered that something as simple as a wish list can help build vocabulary, and even encourage them in learning to write. Braeden is doing good to elaborate more, rather than saying "nerf sword." Bailey is actually listing out his reasons for his wishes. I want to know WHY they want something. They have so much crap, and I say that lovingly, that we are focusing on bringing in less. If they will really, really play with/use something, then I'm all over it. If it's something they want just because someone else wants it or because the commercial looks cool, then they've got some 'splaining to do.

Today is very much a Monday. I'm behind. I'm tired. I have doctors appointments to get to, prescriptions to pick up and haircuts that are much needed.

I need more coffee. more thing... FOUR MORE DAYS UNTIL THE HOBBIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yep. My inner geek is squeeing.

Have a great week, errbody! :D

Sunday, December 2, 2012's December.

Big Bang Theory
There is absolutely no reason for this picture, other than we just love Big Bang. I thieved this from my oldest son's Pinterest this morning, lol.

Yup. December. The Christmas tree was put up last night, and we will commence with our holiday movie watching today. Up first? My annual tradition of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.


Hee hee. I love this movie. I could probably quote something from it, every day of December. Ah, good times. :D

Even though I spent more time away from home, than I did AT home last week, it wasn't a disaster. That's always nice. UPS or FedEx was here 4 different days, which did nothing to quell the whole "she must be having an affair with her delivery guys" thing going around the neighborhood. Makes me giggle. Between Amazon and BestBuy (my amazon prime account and my bestbuy silver rewardzone membership both have free expedited shipping), I am doing most of my shopping from home this year, and spending less! Woot!

This week I don't really have any school plans for the boys. They are mostly where I want them in their T4L (which, btw, I was able to recommend to an online friend who was looking for something for their wee one with learning disabilities...we are so abnormal in our homeschooling, I love it when I can recommend something and look responsible. HA!). They have some holiday word lists for spelling. They will read. And Bailey and I will be working on his DPA (District Project Achievement) for 4H.

He declared his project, which will be a cooking project called Better Breakfast. He will have to cook this, in front of a judging panel, in March. But, the DPA also includes homeschool portfolios which are due by Dec 14th. Those are something that we honestly don't have any experience with yet, but it's good practice for when we start with his high school portfolio next year. :)

Other than that, we will be working on our homemade/handmade stuff. I do my own Christmas cards, and the boys like to do some too. They also want to make something for everyone, like the cookies they did last year. With the new addiction to Pinterest that seems to be plaging not only Bailey and I, but the hubs as well, we are finding all kinds of homemade holiday goodies. So we may do cookies. We may do candies. We may do jar mixes. Who knows what they will come up with...

Alrighty. Off to enjoy my Sunday with my guys. Hope everyone has a great week!