Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Off To Redding :)

I get to go to a conference at Bethel church this weekend with a bunch of really fun friends (starting with my dear Mommy!) I'm super duper excited!! It's almost a tradition (Yikes! That word can be a bad word or a good word depending on the situation and your perspective) for me to go down there every February. For some reason it just seems easier for me to make it to this one than to the June or October conference, I think that must be in my head though, :)

We are headed out tomorrow and we have a busy morning so I have to make sure I get everything ready today. The laundry is all accounted for, the dishes are close (until I cook today anyway) and I need to make sure my fam has some meals in the fridge for the next three days. And all my clothes need to be chosen and packed, everything but the toothbrush in fact. I have ducks, chickens and rabbits to feed (and little boys:) And Joshua talked me into putting eggs in the incubator. And Brannon is sick with a bad cold, so I have lots of sitting and holding him and getting juice, and bugging him to drink it, and ferrying blankets and pillows from the bed to the couch and the couch to the bed... I am VERY glad the laundry is already done.

In the morning we'll get everything loaded up and head to town. I'm meeting my sister for an appointment she has and we'll hang out with her until it's time for my therapy(or as Nate would say 'torture') session with Bear. It's been two weeks since the last one, he wanted to see how my muscles would respond to a week without him. I was supposed to do some exercises on my own this week. SUPPOSED to. Ahem. I DID them ok! Sheesh. Once. Which is all I was supposed to do. IF...

There is that if.

If I was able to push myself as hard as he pushes me. If not, I was to do them all again at the end of the week. Well, I was not feeling so hot the day I did my exercises. So, needless to say I found myself saying "Ok, I'm DONE with that one." Some tiny corner of my brain was probably saying "Uh, how many of those did you do? Are you sure you don't have a couple more in you?" But this was way too tentative an approach for the irritated part of my brain that was in control at the moment. Did I behave and do them again a few days later? No. I did not. Honestly Friday I completely forgot. And Saturday I Almost completely forgot. Almost. We had to move Joshua's party from Sunday to Saturday at the last minute because Nate found out he had to work Sunday. So I was swamped with cake and casseroles and frosting and...

Excuses. One and all.

So I don't know how I'll do tomorrow. I'm feeling pretty wimpy anyway. Due to recurring sinus inflammation, and general wimpiness, I haven't been walking much, or riding my bike at all. Which means I'm not making progress near as fast as I was in the fall. Disheartening to say the least. I'm hoping the sunshine will give me a boost of spirits and I'll get off my behind...oh. Wait. Hasn't it been sunny for a week already???? But, the sinuses... Aaaarrrggghhh!!

Ok, how did I get on that subject? I was talking about Redding. Exciting stuff! And FRIENDS! Mom, Joanne, Jack, Janis, Rowdy, Bear, and Lorna. And me. Yaay! I can't wait to be sitting in line, laughing with everybody, waiting to crowd into the sanctuary and laugh some more, and dance, and listen to great teaching, and laugh some more, and maybe misbehave a tiny bit (you know, pass notes with Janis, that kind of thing)...


Speaking of things to do... Shouldn't I be DOING them about now???

See you next week.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Joshua!! :)

We had a surprise this morning to learn that Joshua now shares a birthday with his youngest cousin!! Congratulations Matt and Emily!!! :)

One proud daddy!
Gabriella and Grandma
Joshua is sticking to his tradition of roasting hot dogs for his birthday. He calls his birthday his "hot dog birthday" to differentiate from his "big party" at Grandma's house on the weekend.
Some star wars legos completed the birthday gifts from mama and papa (along with his bunny). He was super excited...
And after enjoying his card...

Headed inside to play legos with Brother (leaving the remains of his lunch where they lay)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Our Weekend

If you are bored by the trivial details of someone else's life, you may want to skip this one :)

I had a lovely treat Friday when Natey stayed home from work. It was a planned ahead of time that he would take the day off in order to attend a marriage seminar together this weekend. It has made the weekend so lovely and long that when I started typing this Saturday evening I had forgotten (again!) that we had a whole day left :)

The marriage seminar was on video and was called "Laugh your way to a better marriage". It was great fun. Some issues were frankly and explicitly addressed that have been avoided in church culture in general and so many of us looked at each other afterward and said "Finally!" It was a good time all around and we had some great conversations come out of it.

After the Saturday morning session we hung around talking to friends for a while, then headed home to grab some lunch. Our plan for the afternoon was to get ready for Joshua's birthday present which we were picking up that afternoon. He's been asking for the same thing for months. Something unexpected for him, my boy who is not such a big animal person asked for a pet bunny. A brown bunny with straight ears (the specification on ears came because Mama loves lops and the boy feels a proper bunny has ears that stand up). Then he changed his mind and decided he wanted a bunny that looked like his stuffed bunny. Which happened to be a dutch. But I couldn't for the life of me find a dutch rabbit within easy driving distance. I suppose we would have come across one eventually, but little boys aren't the most patient creatures in my experience. So I also searched for an alternative. I found a girl who'd been doing 4H for quite a while ready to downsize her herd. She had lovely, pedigreed mini-rexes for only 10 dollars each. I presented this alternative to Joshua and he agreed this is what he would like to do. He very specifically asked for a "mama" rabbit. The day before we were to go pick up his bunny I overheard a conversation that enlightened me as to his gender preference. He wanted an actual MAMA bunny, with babies in her tummy so he could soon enjoy funny little baby bunnies. Ahem.

Well, his Mama had to explain to him this would not be the case. But...


Since Mama has a big soft spot for bunnies...she agreed to purchase a "papa" bunny to make the plan for baby bunnies possible. This plan was agreeable to the munchkin. So today we came home with a lovely black doe (there weren't any brown ones, but he fell in love with the black one the instant he laid eyes on her, so it's all good) and a very cute chocolate tortoise buck (it's a nice orange color with a bit of chocolate shading). They are super, super cute and super soft and nice sweet bunnies who are fun to hold. Hopefully I will have some pictures of bunny and little boy cuteness to show off soon.

I survived the half hour drive and back tolerably well. The drive back was much better, on the way there a certain little boy was so excited as to be unbearably loud and rowdy, at least for the close quarters of a car. Once we got the bunnies settled in I started to work on some writing while the boys played outside in the mud. Then the phone rang...

It was my mom and she said, "Are you on your way?"

Huh? Oh Shoot!!!! HOW ON EARTH DID I FORGET MY BROTHER'S BIRTHDAY PARTY TONIGHT?????? Good thing my folks only live a mile away. It was definitely a red-face moment though. I remembered up until some unknown moment Saturday when everything but the present moment was apparently completely erased from my brain. But, we had a great time, enjoyed dinner with our family and wished my brother and his wife happy birthday.

Home again. Baths and bed for the boys. Nate had a friend over and I worked on a bit of transcription, then moved on to blogging and finally to reading and vegging. Went to bed at a decently early hour.

I enjoyed church immensely yesterday morning. Afterward we took a trip to Medford for Nate to run an errand. We all enjoyed some lunch together and a couple of stores. We came home with a few new craft supplies and had a nice quiet evening at home.

And there you have it, our eventful (for us :) weekend...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Papa Knew It Would Be Good For School...

Heroscape, that is. Mama didn't really bother to have an opinion either way. Imagine my unschooling delight to not only see my boys playing a "grown-up" (kind of) game together without help and without fighting...

They used to randomly pick their armies. One day I mentioned that each character has points and you usually make sure each player has the same number of points. Then I continued washing dishes... The next day Brannon was counting up points to make sure they had about the same. I asked him how he knew he had the right number of points. "Well," he said, "if my card has 170 points and Joshua's card has 120 points I just find the difference between 7 and 2 which is 5. Then I know I need to find Joshua a guy with 50 points." Upon further inquiry I discovered he'd asked Papa to help him count points and Nate had explained to him that counting by hundreds and tens is no different than counting by ones. The information sank in and stuck.

Brannon will often make up character cards writing 'moov' 'utack' 'range' and 'defense' and assigning point values. He is learning to make a balanced character that works realistically within the game.

They are both learning to add up how many dice they need for each turn and the simple addition and subtraction needed to carry out their "attack" and "defense"

I've been asked a couple of times to read out a character's "special attack" or some other information they only need once in a while. I think they'll start trying to read them themselves pretty soon.

I suppose we'll be back to science experiments and easy reader books in a week or so, when the heroscape craze wears off, or maybe it will be on to something new. Who knows. My suggestions and thoughts on what will interest them and get them learning are wrong at least as often as they are right. I just keep searching and suggesting and grabbing opportunities (carefully! It's so easy to go overboard and start pushing...) to teach through what they are doing day to day.

It's possible Brannon will need a lot more structure next year, or will want it. I don't know. I've never done this before, so for now it's one day at a time. And lots of prayers for wisdom! ;-)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Didn't know this was possible, did you?

I found a surprise when I cut open one of the butternut squashes waiting on my counter... There were four sprouts in there.
The squash itself was a bit dry but quite tasty in our veggie soup :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Meadow On Her Nest

These are floating nests that were built by my father-in-law many years ago (I don't know how many...) They are meant for the wild Canada geese that come through every spring. There has only been one pair the last few years and Meadow has chosen a different nest than the mama goose usually uses(there are three) so hopefully the geese will still stay. They take their babies down to the creek the day they hatch. I am worried Meadow's babies will be eaten by the big-mouthed bass that are in the pond, anybody know if they eat ducklings?? I could always capture mama and babies when they come up to eat and pen them for a couple weeks till they are too big for the fish to eat, or for a couple months so they'll have a better chance against the foxes when traveling between the house and the pond *sigh*.

I happened to be stepping out the door when she came up to grab a bite to eat yesterday. I thought the silly girl was going to choke herself she was scarfing so fast. I walked up to feed the chickens and when I came back she was already gone, back to the pond.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Signs Of Spring

Buds on the willow trees...
This pretty girl is sitting on a nest! :) I hope to have ducklings to show you in about a month (muscovy eggs incubate for 35 days, almost as long as goose eggs) hurray! I love ducklings, they are the cutest bird babies ever :)

Monday, February 1, 2010

Avatar...again... :D

Yesterday Nate had some friends over to play Heroscape. Knowing the little boys would be thoroughly engrossed in the game as well and that Nate didn't want to watch Avatar in the theater again, I set out to find some folks to watch it with me. Some ''silly'' people didn't want to watch it again, *grin*. I can understand though, spending money on the theater is usually not a top priority around here, especially not to see something more than once.

But, I knew of a few crazies who would go again, even though they had already watched it more times than I had. It worked out fun, a bunch of spouses were otherwise involved last night so we had four "halves" going to the movies together (Myself, Bear, Janis, and Sue). We also ran into Melissa (without Shiloh, haha--Hi Melissa!) and her brother Josh. :)

A good time was had by all. Almost all (sorry you got motion sick Melissa, next time have us try praying for you before you sneak out!)

I'm really glad I went for the third (Yes! THIRD) time. The first time we watched in 2d and it was great and all. The second time we watched in 3d, but I was really tired and my glasses were scratched so a number of scenes were blurry and I kept getting dizzy. This time I had better glasses plus when I got dizzy the first time Bear put his hand on my head and said "No!" and that was the end of it, LOL.

The line that is sticking with me most this time (besides, of course, "Everything is backwards now...Like out there is the real world and in here is the dream." oooh, I could talk about this one for a while) was this one...

"Sometimes your whole life boils down to one insane move."

Maybe later I'll post some of my thoughts about the movie, but right now I have to go help a little boy sound out some words ;)