Friday, September 28, 2012

Wintergrass

I just put in our wintergrass...

Just another fun thing about being in AZ.  Our "summer" grass dies in the winter, so if you want a lawn you need to put in the wintergrass.  Apparently the best way to do that is to put in perrenial rye grass (why can't you put in annual rye grass, btw?) over the top of your lawn.  Then I aerate and then I throw compost over the whole thing....

And then I wait for the birds to come eat all of it.  So far, there hasn't been a bird fest in our law, but I'm sure that will come with time. 

I love the look of the grass in the summer though.  Our summer grass isn't my favorite kind, but the wintergrass is more like the grass we had growing up.

Anywho... that is my education for you on the finer points of wintergrass. :D

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

My Sad Sprinkler Story

Our lawn had some wet spots, I thought it was a bad head, so I changed it.  Then I found a SAM head that would stop water from leaking.  And then, it went to another head.  Yay.  Getting where this is going?

But, it dripped for a long time, all day in fact, and it left quite a puddle.  So, we were left to figure out if it was just the low head or if the valve was leaking.  After some effort we figured that the valve should be replaced.  So, we replaced it.  And by we, I mean Drew.

And then I found out we replaced the wrong valve.  We'd changed the diaphragm and the solenoid ON THE WRONG VALVE.

We had also wired the drip system wrong so it wasn't working either.

So, today I cleaned the diaphragm and the solenoid on the RIGHT valve and while it does still drip (we installed a drip valve that would let the excess go under ground and I dug that up today to see what I could learn from it).  It does stop after a while (about 20 minutes).  I am 90% sure that if the valve was actually broken it would drip longer then that.

And then my diaphragm (on the sprinkler, not my "personal diaphragm") started leaking and to re-screw it and then I slammed my head into the circuit breaker and started to cry.

And I realized that maybe I am expecting perfection from something that really can't be perfect... and I may expect that in other areas of my life as well.

Kids, cleaning, naps, quality of food.  And then I'm slamming my head into the proverbial circuit breaker and bleeding all over, and who does that help?  I may have been happier with a soggy lawn....

Could this be a more boring post?  I just wanted to remember how insanely stupid we are.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

With All this Union Talk

I've been hearing how President Obama loves teachers, and how hard working they are -- hence, he loves the union.

Umm.... not so fast.

Here is the main thing you have to know about the teacher's union.  Their #1 is the union.  It isn't teachers, it isn't students, it's the union.  They will fight to keep themselves at ALL costs.  They are making money by being a union.  They don't want to stop that.

The other thing I think most people need to know is that 99% of teachers are just doing their best.  We are constantly cutting their funds and just expecting they'll make it up somehow.  So many do SUCH an amazing job.  I just don't think it's fair to put teachers in the same category as the union.

When Drew was laid off the union paid for to have a lawyer.  The lawyer basically just said, "oh man, 10 years with the district, that really stinks but I can't do anything.  Good luck with everything."  10 years of union dues for that kind of high quality protection is just heart warming, don't you think?

The union needs to fill its coffers so it can stay on the happy side of the politicians.  That is all.  Then, they send you 9 million flyers for said happy politicians to get them elected, so they can stay in that politician's back pocket and pretend that they are all about children.

BUT, an organization that is all about children wouldn't lay off amazing teachers to protect teachers that don't do their jobs.  Children need the best that the money can buy (which, frankly isn't a lot - -we are amazingly lucky that anyone goes in to teach anymore).

I'm not really on either side of the union debate in Chicago.  I think using standardized testing is useless, and the money could be MUCH better spent elsewhere in the classroom.  Also, teachers won't want to teach disadvantaged children, because their test scores show it -- and those teachers would lose money.  That doesn't seem fair, does it?

But I hate it when people say the union is on the side of __________.  Because it is on its own side.  Always remember that. :)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Stripping Down Strep -- TMI monday :)

Princes P got sick last night.  It came on suddenly, ear/head/throat pain.  Fever came on, she was miserable.  Thank goodness for Tylenol and Ibuprofen!

So, this morning I play the call in game with the pediatricians and was sad to find out that they don't offer just a strep culture (as I recommended back here).  Oh Kaiser, how I miss you.

Anywho.... she was sick enough and since her friend just got diagnosed with strep I wanted it taken care of if that, indeed, was what it was.  So, we went in, and her culture was negative.  Her symptoms fit strep, but she never had pussy tonsils... BUT, again, if it was strep I needed it gone.  So, we went.

The visit will end-up costing me somewhere in the ballpark of 65 bucks.  Just to find out it was viral.  Of course, this is WHY I have an HSA, and we are saving a lot of money by having a high deductible health plan, but it's the moral of the thing.  Why they can't offer strep tests without seeing a prescriber (we saw a very nice nurse practitioner)?  I actually called my pediatrician's administration office and asked them why they don't.  It sounds like they do it for few reasons.  Mainly that most parents, if it's negative, need a doctor to tell them everything's going to be fine (I don't).  Also, they said if it's positive they have to get a prescriber to write a prescription and that sets off their "schedule"... and while I "get" that, I'm pretty sure they could have a policy in place where nurses can call in a prescription if they get a positive result.

I then, found out, that the pediatrician that I used to work for doesn't do walk-in strep cultures.  I really think it's a money thing.  These offices aren't getting reimbursed much, so an office visit at least brings in a little more cash, and I get that (I just don't want to GIVE that).

BUT, then I googled it, and guess what I found:

That's right, my very own strep tests!  25 of them for just under 40 bucks... I'm not afraid to culture a kid.  It sounds like everything's in the box (mostly a giant Q-tip, the solutions and a vial to mix it all in).  SO, if you're willing to swab your own family I think this could save you some serious dough. 

I am not sure what I'll do if I get a positive.  I have a few prescribers that might be willing to give me an RX (and I would make note of it because repetitive strep positives aren't a good thing, you want a record), or I could just see the doctor, knowing the cost will be worth it in the end so they don't die of rheumatic fever. :)  I think I'll bring it up at my next well check, just to see what our regular pediatrician thinks about giving me an RX if it's positive.

I should also say that these rapid strep tests sometimes give a false negative.  So, if they're super pussy tonsils and it was still negative I think I'd have no choice but to take them in and shell out the cash.  The true standard of a strep test is a culture on the ol' petrie dishes

Strep, by the way, isn't something to mess around with.  If left untreated it can cause a lot of nasty side effects (included heart issues).  So, I always feel safer getting a culture.

It's just my "culture" {wah-wah}

**A note, if you plan to get these for your family you need to be willing to get back to their tonsils and really give it a good swab with the q-tip thing.  Maybe have a nurse friend show you the first time.  It isn't hard, but it does need to be done right.  Swabbing their cheek won't get you the info you need!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Thoughts on A Friday Night

One's on a scout campout, one's at a football game.  I hauled the other two to school.  We rode our bikes, and we did pretty well at it.  I better weigh like 3 pounds tomorrow on the scale.

Spencer had a writing celebration today.  He somehow wrote about Harry Potter in his personal narrative.  I wasn't particularly impressed, but I do love me a writing celebration.  Maybe next time he can write about the time we biked to school.  :)

We put the finishing touches on our Halloween costumes.  We are doing a bit of a repeat from years gone by, but we have had to fix a few of them.  I weigh a good 30 pounds less then the last time I wore mine, hoping that's not problematic.

We're fixing a sprinkler head tomorrow.  Think we'll still be married in 24 hours?  Time will tell...

Luckily I cut my finger at work yesterday so maybe I can't "help" like I usually do (stand over Drew's shoulder and tell him what he's doing wrong and then shove him out of the way and do it myself).

Princess P is not a fan of the Halloween store.  This one wasn't as awful as our old Spirit Store (nothing jumped out at us) but she still wanted to be held the whole time.  I still hate those stores (but they had what we needed!)

I am slowly realizing my kids don't actually know how to REALLY do the jobs I have assigned them, so I am "helping" them for the next 3 weeks.  I have bribed them with candy once they can do it to my expectations without me "helping".

I really am such a helper.

Princess P doesn't like to utilize the number 13.  Our counting of our paper chain isn't helping.  Tonight on our amazing bike ride she and I were singing 11-12-13-14... I don't think it helped.

and that is all.  I think it's bedtime. :)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Can You Really Go Home Again?

Our paper chain to show P how long til' we
get on the plane to see Noona.
Do you remember over the summer when we were in Utah and I was caught off guard when people would ask me where I'm from?

Because in my mind, I still live in California.  Over a year later I sometimes step into my garage and think it's amusing that I live in Arizona now.  Sometimes I can't really wrap my head around it.

We are headed back to the Bay Area in a few weeks.  The kids (especially P) are getting really excited for it.  We're thinking of cheap fun things to do while we're there and all the people we want to see and hug, and hang out with.

I've been talking to friends from there that I don't usually talk to.  I mean, I talk to them, but not frequently and as we've discussed where their kids are at or whatever I'm taken aback.  She's in JR HIGH?  How on EARTH is your child in JUNIOR HIGH?  I mean, it's obvious to me that my kids have grown up...

but somehow life went on there too.

And I'm not sure I'm ready to face that fact.  I kind of feel like it froze when we left.  Things are just the same, but they're not.

And how do I prepare to face that?

This isn't even just about Roddy, although that's some of it.  I'm just not sure I'm ready to re-visit and then leave again.  It was incredibly painful to leave.  I cried for a good hour in the car.  I didn't have a lot of time to really take in all the things that were happening, and then all the sudden we were gone.

I remember my friend Angi saying that I needed to experience California so that I didn't have regrets when I left.

And while I experienced plenty while we lived there I am just nervous for our return trip.

Nervous and excited.

Are you excited?

Do you have any idea what I'm talking about, or do you think I am crazy? Wait, don't answer that. :)

**And some of this may be me nervous to fly.  Anyone remember how much I hate to fly?  {Got is in charge, don't jump off the plane}

**In other news I apparently have no idea where many of my friends live.  I was sending a quick email to my close CA friends just saying that we were coming and I needed a ride from the airport... and I was going through my facebook list and I'd think -- Oh, send it to her!  ERRR... that friend lives in Arizona.  I really am lucky to have SO many great friends, especially with such a crazy mind as I have. :)

I am for real about wanting advice though, how did you feel when you "went home"?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Zaycon Foods Chicken

Hey people, Zaycon foods is having a chicken sale in the desert.  Chickens in the desert, who knew?

Anyway, I have always wanted to order but it just wasn't the right time or whatever...  But, now that I'm eating high protein, NOW is the time.  I've had a lot of friends buy from the company who have really liked the quality of the chicken, and for 1.67 a pound for GREAT chicken I don't think you can beat it.

Just thought I'd share.  Pick up is during fall break, so that may be problematic for some of you.  I guess they do it twice a year.  I'll be sure to share my experience as I am buying this time.  It is first come, first serve...  It comes in four 10 pound bags, so if you want to split with friends, that makes it easier.

*After looking at their facebook page, they're doing chicken in:  Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Louisiana, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, Rhode Island, and Arkansas

*FYI, that is a referal link and I make a whole dollar if you order.  Anyway, just so's you know. :)

Here's a good idea of what you're getting:

Letting Go

Have you ever thought of the power of letting go?

I'm amazed at how freeing it can be when you entirely let something go.

I'm not prone to let go of stuff very easily.  I like to hang onto things like a life preserver in tumultuous waters.  I may have SAID I'm letting go of something, but my mind continually mulls things over like water over a stone.

Of course, it depends on what it is, but if my mind keeps TELLING my mind to let it go it eventually works.

And it feels SO great!

I wish my mind could let go of things easier, but I know that it takes time to process through stuff, so I shouldn't expect too much from my little brain.

I'm just saying (and this is good advice for myself, don't get me wrong) that if you're really mad about something, the best option, almost 95% of the time is to let it go.  Things eventually work out.

That's right, did you hear me -- I said they'll work out. :)

How long does it take you to let go of stuff?  I guess, for me, one of my main issues is to realize that I may still have a principal that is my sticking point, and that's OK to still have that opinion/thought -- but you can let go of the issue at hand and realize that your life will be better without the disagreement.

Thoughts?  Anything you need me to let go of?

Friday, September 14, 2012

When "Friend" Doesn't Quite Cut It...

So many good times with them at their house
I don't want to write this.  I've started it like 14 times, but I know I'll want it printed in the blog book one of these days.

We met Roddy when he was a band booster for Drew's band.  Drew seemed to really like him and his wife, and they were exceptionally helpful and sweet to our whole family.  Drew, in particular found a deep kinship with Roddy through the years.

And why on earth wouldn't he?  Roddy was sweet and kind, he was always there to give of his time and energy.  He made whatever was important to you, important to him.  And, when things were important to him, he went after them with amazing enthusiasm.  He was there to help out in Jazz Band (even when his kids weren't in jazz band), he was there to help out at games or concerts.  Often making personal relationships with kids that weren't his own. 

Roddy was an amazing father, but he also helped so many kids by his positive attitude and the way he made them feel about themselves. Honestly, I can't imagine anyone being more "there" for their kids.  He was at EVERY event, often before and after, giving them tips (wanted or unwanted), taking pictures (and a LOT of pictures) and making sure they were on task.  He was so proud of those two kids.  As well he should be...

At Conner's Baptism
Our friendship grew into going out to dinner once a month together.  I always appreciated feeling like were on "equal" ground with them, and learning from them and how they coped with their "older" kids.  It still gave me hope that my kids would turn out alright if I stayed involved and loved them.  Our dinners were so fun.  Lots of visits to Yumi Yogurt and finding new restaurants together.

When Princess P was born, their family just couldn't get enough of her.  They watched our kids while I had kidney stones or was in labor.  It was nice to know our kids have a "place" that was a safe zone for them when I wasn't able to be with them.

Soon after P was born Roddy was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.  Already in the throws of postpartum depression I spent an evening looking at his odds.  I was overwhelmed by how bad they were and the threat of this cancer weighed heavy on my heart.

But Princess P grew, and so did our friendship.  Roddy was adamant that things weren't going to change.  I remember going out to dinner with them like a week after the diagnosis and he didn't bring it up once.  He lived his life around cancer, not as a cancer patient.  He'd get up early for treatments and then head into work.  Someone could have easily wallowed, but Roddy didn't.  He even became the band booster president, was still at events and helping out.  I wish we could bottle the "hutspa" it took to be at all those events even though the chemo was fighting him.  It was inspiring.

Drew and Roddy had a special relationship.  I can't stay awake through a movie to save my life, and Drew loves movies, so he and Roddy had many late night movie stops.  They also went skiing together and generalized tom foolery.  They loved Fry's (the electronic store, although they also loved fries, the deep fried kind -- mostly at In and Out), spending time together and sharing music.  Drew doesn't have a brother, but I think he quickly found that relationship with Roddy.  A safe place to talk about how life was going and to enjoy each other's company.

Our family loved Roddy.  P loved to cuddle with him, and my boys loved to be teased by him and see what crazy piece of electronics he'd buy next.  They were at birthday parties and baptisms, we spent holidays at their house and we knew they were our family.  I will add how grateful we were for that.  Being "alone" around the holidays can be hard, but we started new traditions with their family, and I am so grateful they invited us in.

We left California with heavy hearts in 2011.  I remember thinking that might be the last time we saw him, but I pushed it aside knowing what  fighter Roddy was and that we'd back soon.  We kept in touch and had hoped to see each other a few months ago when they had a layover in Phoenix on the way to his father's funeral.  Drew was thrilled, but Roddy was having a hard time breathing so we weren't able to hook up.

He and Drew talked a few times since we moved and Drew missed him so much.  I think for men, especially, it's hard to find that relationship for yourself.  I know Drew has had a really hard time with all this.  My heart hurts for him.

One of my very favorite things about Roddy is that while we may not have always agreed (let's remember, we're crazy Mormons) he never seemed to let that be a sticking point.  He'd get past that and move onto things that we did agree about.  What a great example of not letting little things get in the way of big things.  I hope I always remember that.

In true Roddy fashion, he apparently gave all his enthusiasm to dying.  He was up early in the morning fixing the family's wi-fi, and was registered into hospice by the afternoon and gone before the day was through.  His family has found the blessing in that as they've gone through this.  They were grateful he didn't have to suffer and was surrounded by those who love him.

Sadly, we weren't there.  I feel horrible.  I hate that we aren't there.  I hate that our live goes on as "normal" because no one here knows him and life truly is the same.  Luckily, distance doesn't always separate the hearts, and we are excited to go see them soon.

My mind can't wrap itself around Rowena without Roddy.  They were such a perfect pairing and I know our marriage was strengthened by watching how they filled each others gaps.  Roddy was in no way perfect and his wife seemed to have the perfect match to him. 

 The beauty is that relationship will continue and there will be a big Rod-Row licence plate on their Cadillac in the sky.  I can't imagine what Roddy's doing right now but I know he's taking pictures to show Rowena when she meets him up there (which better not be any time soon).

We miss you Roddy, I know we'll see you again.  Until then, I'll miss your woo-hoo's, the hugs and the many times I heard your shutter click.  Peace be with you, and with the many people who adored you.  We love you.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Facinating Garden Update

For many of you you're pulling out garden plants and filling up your compost.  Not in the desert!  It's time to PLANT!  my garden is just about in!  I have a few things left to plant, but we're just about in!  It's been nice lately because it's been raining on and off so the soil is ripe and ready for my seeds!

Here's what it looks like:

The top one is on the right side, and the bottom one is next to it on the left.  Here's a photo from the basil plant



This one is looking at it full on.

 
In the picture above you can see that our watermelon and Eggplant are still going crazy (far left) and we have peppers and jalapenos that are doing pretty good.  I left all those in.  We had a pretty big weed problem in the plots to the right last fall, so I topped them with compost and covered them up with weedcloth for the summer to hopefully kill whatever it is that lies beneath.  Fingers crossed.
 
Anway, excited for the bouty.  I've missed my home grown lettuces and I'm hoping to get a lot of peas.
 
Of course, garden's all about faith.  I have a lot right now, we'll see how it's fairing in a few weeks. :)

Not All Together

I know the blogging world in general tends to make it look like a person has it all together.

Let me just say I don't.

Our dear friend's passing has thrown us all for a loop.  Just a lot of time thinking about their family and guilt about not being there...  thinking about going there or what we should do.  It's taking a big chunk out of myself.

A lady passed out in church on Sunday and I ended-up needing to call 911 when I coudln't get her to perk up.  Sure, not a huge deal but it got my adrenaline going.

On Monday I found a scoripion in my dishcloth, while using it.  It crawled up onto my wrist, where I saw him and quickly shook him into the sink.  No bites.

Do you know that story about Nephi and how God tells him he won't be tested above that which he was able.  Well, if that scoprion bit me I'm pretty sure I would have been tested above what I was able.  I ended up crying on and off during most of the rest of the day.

The kids (two in particular) have been at each other's throat and while I think I may have a consequence in place to stop the fighting I hate how each one is telling me that they HATE each other (C said, "ZERO love, I have ZERO love for him.").

nice.

Poor Drew is going at full steam during his busy time.  He's spending 10-13 hours at school per day, and I know this has been really hard for thim.  It's always hard when BOTH spouses are at the end of their wicks.

I'm just spent.  I think we all get this way.  My problem is I am not able to drop the plates that are spinning.  I still babysat a couple of times yesterday, had book club at my house, the cleaning schedule still chugs along and I've got my garden almost all planted.  I had to pull myself from the news yesterday because the thoughts of 9-11 were more then I could take.

And life goes on.  It thoroughly HAS to go on, but what do you do to preserve yourself when part of you wish time could just stop so you could take a few deep breaths?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Remember It

Sure, I remember it.  Bleary eyed after a long swing shift with Conner on the couch drinking his sippy cup.  Just couldn't believe what was happening.  Couldn't figure out if it was just some weird news show.

Thought for a moment of who we knew who might be there, and said a prayer for all those that were there.

Thought about my parents who were supposed to come in a couple of days.

Thought about how life was going to change.

Wondered if it was the second coming...

But, I think everyone has "911 moments" in your life.

Days where it's "before" and "after".

We definitely had one of those days this past weekend, but I've had others.

And I'm not always sure I want to remember them.  I know I didn't want to see those towers fall another time, or hear another story.  I just didn't want to.  I didn't want to remember.  I had to carry on with my life.  Especially with kids you have to act like every thing's going on as usual.

So, what do I want to remember?  At least about 911.  I want to remember that there are people who are courageous and brave, and are willing to save others before themselves.  I need to remember that evil entirely exists.  I need to keep my eyes open and be willing to fight for what is good.  I want to remember that family is what is most important, and remember to hug everyone a little closer.

I think from each of your 911 moments you take away something different.  It changes you, and yet so many things are still the same...

Saturday, September 08, 2012

There is a Plan...

Sometimes you shouldn't get up at 5 am and look at your email, beacause it might be the saddest of news.  It, in fact was very sad news...

One of our best friends, Roddy, died last night, surrounded by friends and family.

Roddy, and his family, were the family we didn't have in California.  They were the first to see Princess P, they were at holidays and birthday parties and surrounded us with their love like a warm blanket.

I want to compose another entry about everything I loved about him, but I wanted to say that Drew and I went to the temple today.  I have such a firm knowledge that I will see him again and he will again be surrounded by friends and family, just like he so very much always wanted to be.

This is what my faith is all about.  You might think it's tank tops, or not drinking caffeine or the strength of the youth pamphlet, but it all boils down to living your life in a way that allows you to be with your family forever -- made possible by the love of our Savior, Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father.  It is a perfect plan, and while the wait to see those we love so much is hard, I know it will be worth the wait.



Roddy was exceptionally loving, thoughtful and was truly one of the most Christlike people I knew.  That is, if Christ was really into technology. :)  Wishing we were in California right now, but we are here... just another hard part of the plan.

Love the M family so very much.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Play Nice Boys....

I watched Obama's speech last night.  I enjoyed it.  I think he's a great "preacher in that he has lots of great ideas and visions.  I think that's inspiring.  I wish we could live within that speech...

But we don't.

I don't like that he jokes whenever he talks about Romney.  I don't think it's nice to belittle anyone at any point, regardless of how much you disagree.

I wish he'd stop pretending that he isn't INSANELY rich.  Much more then I'll ever dream to be.

The problem is that Romney is honest.  He's honest to say we need cuts, etc.  He was also honest to London when he said he was worried. I'm sure he was.  For a while they sure didn't look ready.

Obama's a dreamer and Romney might be considered a doer...

They're just very different views of how to run the country.  I surely don't agree with either one 100%, but I align myself more with one then the other.

I just want to live in a world of Obama's speeches.  Anyone know where I can do so?

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Movies on youtube

How did I not know there were full length disney movies on youtube?

How is this legal?  They've been on there for months...

Either way, Princess P had the best morning of her life watching Sleeping Beauty.  I really should invest in a few...

Stretched

Once again I'm talking to one kid about not smoking weed, and the other kid I'm playing fun games and watching youtube videos on shapes.

Sometimes I feel like I live in so many separate worlds... :)

But, I wanted to share what me and Princess P are doing.

Lots of mazes to work on her fine motor skills, and I have finally brought out scissors for her to try.  El Presidante cut all the pleats in our curtains so I have a fear of scissors that needs to be overcome (apparently by reminding her that we ONLY cut paper mom says is OK every time I bring them out).  She's a lefty and I can't figure out if she cuts better with her left or her right.  How did two right handed parents produce two left handed children.  Is it genetic?  She will write with both hands, but does much better with her left.

Then it's onto puzzles.  I am using some of these with the border, as well as some dollar store ones.  We have a lot of great puzzles and they are often a shooting-off point to a youtube video.  The other day we watched one about bears, and then today we watched a few shape ones.  Youtube is such a treasure for little kids.  I remember wishing that I could show El Presidante a show about something we were working on, but Sesame street never seemed to be in sync with us.  But Youtube has TONS of great stuff.

We just played a game called Silly Expressions.  I can't recommend this game enough.  I think we picked it up at Savers or something when the boys were little.  You each practice making faces and trying to pick out what face the other person is making.  Lots of good emotion talk and using our faces to show our emotion in general.  Me likey. :)

We have also started a set of readers from Creative Teaching (got them at Lakeshore when Conner was little, these seem pretty similar).  This one is "No, no Nicky" and you keep saying the same words over and over.  I think when Conner was little I was trying for a great variety of words, but we have a sticker chart and she'll read each book 4 times before we move onto another one.  It really does help them have success at reading, and that's always a good feeling.

Today we played a little game with some word family flashcards (can anyone else tell that I have far too much early learner stuff at my house?).  We played the old C-AR CAR game like on Electric company.  She did the first letter and I supplied the rest.  Do you guys like the new electric company?  Seems a little old for her... although this clip is from it.


Anyway, that's what we've been doing.  Right now she's downstairs reading "Rosita's Magic Shoes" on tape.  Love all the stuff that's there to help little kids learn.

Makes it fun to be a "fun" mom (even if you're not a "fun" mom).  Happy Thursday!!!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

The Word of Wisdom: A Little Less Spice

Tonight I begrudgingly went off to a PTO meeting, it was 2 of 3 this week.  Yay!

I heard it was about substance abuse and I didn't really need to know anymore.  Turns out our school doesn't have a lot of substance abuse (yay!) but there are new fears coming into our kids path each and every day.

The school officer talked about Spice and Bath Salts.  I'm not talking Calgon here either.  Spice is a synthetic marijuana and bath salts are synthetic meth.  BUT they're crazy, they just spray the chemical in a really hap-hazard way so some packets get a lot, and really strong -- and some get very little.  AND, here's the kicker, both are sold at smoke shops, and even at circle K.

So, unsuspecting youth is at a party and someone says, hey -- I picked this up at Circle K let's smoke some -- it's totally legal.

And totally dangerous.

Which, made me think of HOW grateful I am for the Word of Wisdom and how God has basically taught us stuff and then we're on our own to decide if things are good or bad.  Some of you might remember my earlier post about how the church says we can have Coke and Pepsi now. 

The truth is that Pepsi and Coke are not really what the word of wisdom is about.  And frankly, we probably have no idea why a lot of it is in place -- but a good portion is just learning what' good for us and what isn't, and if I am teaching my child not to do any of those things maybe it won't matter to him that it's "legal" -- he just knows it sounds dumb.

That isn't going to stop me from having a long talk with him about being dumb. 

I hate how people come up with awful things just to make a dollar.  I'm grateful for parent education on things to make our kids be aware of.  It takes a village people, it takes a village.

The Devil Shouldn't Use a Pitchfork

Compost bin
on my wish list.
I went out to turn our compost today.  About midway through I started feeling so proud of myself and how great I am at composting.  I was considering writing a blog about composting and how I'm not going to have to buy bags and bags of the stuff and how much money that's going to save me and how I'm just amazing.

And then I saw it.

a GIANT scorpion.  Seriously, probably one of the biggest one I've seen.  Turns out a pitchfork isn't that effective as a means of death for small creatures.  I finally slammed it on it and watched it die.  Sadly, I also found a few of its babies.

Ew.. ew.. ew....

**Random aside:  Princess P was moving a chair by what she was going in the kitchen and I asked her why she was moving a chair and she said she needed to sit down so she didn't have to pee... I told her she should just go potty.  Might be time to work on kegals with that one....

Back to me...

Anyway, I made it through.  I am not that amazing, and it is likely that Drew will be turning the compost for the next few months.

The other problem with that is there are a MILLION bugs in that compost (which is great, you want lots of bugs) but then every time something moved I got the heebie jeebies.  I will say that I did finish the job.  I just wanted to die most of the time. :)  The compost is pretty well finished, so that's good.  I'm ready to plant, plant, plant.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Primary

I've said it before... my job in primary is kind of getting me down.

It's not really the kids.  And I LOVE the other ladies in primary, but the job itself, the constant pelting of choosing the right and all the stories, that all seem the same, and the week after week after week of lessons.  We hardly ever leave town which leaves me constantly teaching, when I could REALLY use a break from it.  But, I do know in my heart how re-assuring it is for those kids to look in and find me every week.

I know there's something I'm supposed to learn.

So, I'm branching out a little.  Stepping out of what is provided in the lesson manual.  I really liked my tithing worksheet from last week.  The kids really got into the counting and those that could read read the directions aloud for everyone else.

So, this week, we're working on our primary program parts.  They always seem to have such a hard time memorizing them, so I thought I'd take a little class time to work on them (lighten the parent's load).  I saw a great idea that I've been using on pintrist of having kids trace using a highlighter.  So, I thought maybe some muscle memory would help them memorize.  Or, I just thought it was  good way to work on letters and take up some time.  Either way, it's my plan for the beginning of class on Sunday.

So, now it's your turn.  What kind of times have you felt pretty ingenious in primary?  Do you ever just want to beat your head into my manual?  Honestly, I was doing pretty good until about May and then I just dreaded putting the lesson together.  I feel like I'm back on track now, just adding  a little of myself to it.

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