Friday, February 9, 2018

And you blink...

It's currently February of 2018.  Last I wrote was in August.  Then I blinked and it was Halloween.  And I blinked and it was Thanksgiving.  Half a blink to Christmas.  Blink again, two months into the new year.  Today I am babysitting my three granddaughters and homeschooling my son.  We are having a relaxing morning since my son is finished his homework from his tutorial for the week and watching the first ice skating competition of the 2018 Winter Olympics.  The Olympics are a great learning opportunity for families.  You can take the opportunity to use a map to locate all the countries that are participating.  You can learn about the different sports that are involved.  You can tally the medals won, creating a big wall chart with flags and sticky notes.  I am a little sad because this is the last opportunity I have with my son to make it a part of his lessons.  The next time we have Olympics in two years he will be a high school student.  I'm thinking he is not going to want to sit with me and tally medals and talk about countries.  I hope I am wrong.  I doubt it though.  In the summer of 2020, however, my oldest granddaughter will have just turned 9.  The other two will be 5 and 6.  I am thinking that will be an awesome time to teach them about the Olympics.  Nathan Chen is the 18 year old skater we have already learned about and we are cheering for him today.  We are hoping he will do better than the young men who have skated so far.  They are really struggling in this competition.  I hope he blows them all away!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017


I have come to realize August is the beginning and the end.  The beginning of "cram it all in" for anything you failed to do this summer.  The beginning of youth and high school football.  The beginning of all the back to school planning and the beginning of thoughts turning to fall, Halloween and all things pumpkin.  August first is really the end of the lazy days of summer.  June and July are all about "we have all summer" and there's no rush to do much of anything because we have "so much time".  Then August 1st arrives and everyone realizes that in one month summer is over and school starts and where did our summer go?  There's a crazy sort of rush to relax.  Get in the amusement parks, pool days and meetings with friends.  But if you are like us, we have already lost every evening to football starting August 1st and all the planning for homeschool and my classes at Heritage must be done soon and I haven't even begun!

So here's to you August.  One more month of summer.  One more month to hang with friends and cousins during the day.  One more month to get curriculum chosen and lesson plans done.  One more month to "relax", except it seems that there's no time for that.  Now I'm missing July!

Saturday, July 29, 2017

A Different Kind of Summer

Tuesday is August first and I am waist deep in homeschool planning, which is nothing new.  I am also planning for three classes that I now teach at a homeschool tutorial so that's a bit different, but the biggest change I would say is that this summer not only am I learning what it's like to be off work for a few months and home again every day, but I also do not have any daycare kids in the house.  I think for just about the first time in almost 30 years I do not have any little people coming to spend the day with us for fun in the sun.  The good thing about that is that there is no alarm clock most days, Dakota sleeps in and I get much more work done.  It's quieter.  The hubby isn't on me for daycare chaos and I don't have to plan activities to keep anyone busy.  The bad thing is also that I don't have to plan activities to keep anyone busy.  Gone for now (until my granddaughters are a bit older) are the "summer camp" days of Koda and his friends doing art classes at Michael's, free movies, craft days at A.C. Moore, themed packets at our table, games outside, a weekly book club.  I so miss those things!  I don't miss the time involved or the bickering or constant need for attention, but I do miss keeping it fun for them and for me.  Now I have a soon to be teenager who is in his room a great deal of the time.  We do park quests now and again, but neither of us like the heat and money has been tight.  So it's been different, both good different and bad different.  I try to go with the flow and I am definitely looking forward to fall.  September is a clean slate and time to begin all over again!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Sum - Sum - Summertime

Summertime - not my favorite season by far, but the best part is here!  It's almost over!  Seriously, that's how I see it.  The beginning of August means the beginning of the end and that's fine with me!  Bring on September with crisp mornings, cool nights, hoodies, clear skies and NO HUMIDITY!  It's been ridiculous here for the past few weeks with heat indices around 110 degrees and that's just rude.  No one wants to be out in that and my husband's high school football team and my son's youth football team have been practicing and it's hard on them and hard on me to even watch them!

So for now I'll sweat and swelter and try to enjoy the days that are free from schedules and demands.  I'll plan for homeschool and cooperative and hide out in my air conditioning, dreaming of fall and all the wonderful things that come with it.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Death Of A Friend

On Tuesday one of the young men on my son's 100lb football team lost his mother suddenly.  She had been sick and had cancer, but had beaten it once.  It came back quickly with a vengence and her death was a shock to all.  I had to tell my 11 year old that his buddy's mom passed away.  This week has been one of my reflection.  He has asked a lot of pointed questions about death and about how his friend will adjust and how his life will change since his mom was a single parent and he had no siblings.  I answered him honestly when I could and we discussed things when I wasn't sure.  It gave me insight into the caring, thoughtful young man I am raising when what I usually get is often a snarky and rude kid.  

However, I have really traumatized my son today. We had another long talk about death in the car coming back from Ecoadventures before going to the funeral home. I was explaining the difference in a viewing and a funeral. He wanted to know why they left the "box" at the grave site and when did they throw the body in the grave.....What?? No, no, son. The body is buried in the casket! He was so surprised. The poor kid thought that your body just got tossed in a hole and they buried you!  That in itself had to be an awfully scary thought!

 Then his dad and I took him to  the funeral home and the first thing his friend tells him is he can't play football with them next year because he has to move to North Beach, which is about an hour from us. So Dakota is heartbroken about this news because he can't really grasp the whole reality of the other situation anyway. He just stands there looking at his buddy.  I tried to get him to speak to him, but he wouldn't say a word. 

Then we go up to pay our respects and there is no casket. Our friend's mom chose to be cremated. Sigh. I had to pull him aside and explain about cremation and ashes and urns. He was shocked and horrified. He lightened the moment with humor, saying "I am traumatized for life", but I could tell by his eyes that it was really a shock.   There is really no easy way to tell someone about that process, but we did talk all night about the reasons why some people choose that option. Now I'm afraid the poor kid is going to have bad dreams. He's worried about losing me since it happened to his friend and now he's got worries about how people are cremated. This week was full of a little too much reality for an 11 year old boy.

And now, a few days later, he has gone back to being his carefree self.  I am glad we got the chance to discuss things and that some of the truths that were revealed were calming.  I am sorry that he had to hear some of the more scary things, but life is scary and hard and at 11 and fairly mature otherwise, I felt he needed to hear the truth.  I don't think I could get much by him anyway.  

I look at my son and I am thankful for the normalcy he experiences in his daily life and my heart breaks for our friend's son who will now have so many changes and for whom nothing will be normal for a very long time.  Suzanne was a good woman who spent her time working hard and raising her son.  She was a proud football momma and I know she will be an angel on his shoulder forever more.