Sunday, October 11, 2015

Teaching and More Teaching

It's been about five months since my last entry...hard to imagine!  So much has changed (as always). The girls are still at their private school and I'm still teaching college writing courses, although this semester has been extremely challenging.  Additionally, I'm teaching 4th grade homeschoolers one day a week and preschoolers one day a week, and doing a little dyslexia tutoring.  I'm tired just thinking about it! 

We're still highly considering homeschooling after Christmas break.  I've decided not to accept the offer at my college for the one class offered this spring and to just have faith that the Lord will provide good jobs for my husband.  When I broke down the expense of driving and the time consumed, one class wasn't worth the hassle.  Besides, I'd like to spend more quality time with my littles while they are little.  Anyway, back to my topic...Lovely has had several problems with other kids at school this year and both girls are asking to homeschool.  I know they can learn a lot from me if they actually do the work and don't try my patience quite as much as they have in the past.  Also, the drive to the private school takes a minimum of 11 hours a week and I'm estimating gas to cost around $1500 for the semester.  Car mileage is another problem--around 9,000 miles just to drive them to school.  It just doesn't seem practical. 

So far, I love teaching the homeschoolers and the preschoolers.  I'm doing Horizons math, First Language Lessons for grammar, Memoria Press for reading/literature, Latin, & Bible, All About Spelling for spelling of course, IEW for writing, and I honestly can't remember the name of the science book...shame on me!  I'm having fun with all of the programs, though, and I can see using them for my children.  I may choose something else for science and math in the future, but we can see how it goes. 

I better begin planning Lovely's birthday...I can't believe it's almost here!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

School's Out

It's pouring outside.  I love the sound of the rain splattering the windows and pounding on the roof, but who doesn't until s/he has to make a trip outdoors and become completely soaked? 

It's summer.  School is out and I'm now constantly thinking about the next school year.  No one every told me school decisions would be one of the hardest things about having a child.  School came easily to my parents--I was in an elementary school rated higher than 98% of other Arizona elementary schools--simply because I lived within the boundaries of it. 

I've enjoyed the school my girls have been attending since October, but a little voice keeps telling me to homeschool, and I've always known you should listen to those still small voices.  This one is a bit nagging, though, so I'm not sure what's going on there.  At first I told their school they would not be coming back in the fall.  Then I was offered a super great deal on tuition, so I said we will return.  It's a long drive, however, and I'm not thrilled with all of the curriculum choices.  They are extremely sweet people, and they have many extras that I like, and I really like the teachers for the upcoming year.  So, it seems crazy to be drawn so much to homeschooling when I have a screaming (and I mean screaming lately) one year old and an enthusiastic two year old.  When I have three classes to teach and teacher portfolios to score and business taxes and paperwork to complete.  When I have a continually dirty house that makes me question what may have died in the next room because of an odd smell here and there and mysterious piles of...stuff. Whoops...too much information...

Anyway, at this point, I know I can't homeschool unless the Lord closes the door on one ore two classes.  At the same time, we need the money for homeschooling.  So, for now, I'll just stay content by ordering homeschool books to use over the summer and coming up with additional preschool ideas. 

School's out.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Birthday Night!

Let me just say, this was wonderful!  S, Lovely, & I went to Derby Dinner on my birthday to see Seven Brides for Seven brothers...the acting was pretty good, the singing was pretty good, and the dancing/acrobatics was wonderful!  --Especially for such a tiny space!  This had to be one of the best birthdays I've had.  The main actors are very reminiscent of those from the movie, which was pretty neat.  And, they pretty much stuck to the storyline I was familiar with.  Lovely giggled and giggled at it, but she loved the movie as well (which is why I was willing to pop $41 for her to attend!). 

Now, I'm in the process of wrapping up the semester.  Enrollment is down, so the class I was going to teach next month was cancelled.  Good news:  Lots of time for projects.  Bad news:  No money for projects.  I am scoring teacher candidate portfolios from home was well, but there aren't many available at a time,unfortunately, and my contract only goes through May. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Chilly Winds, Chirping Birds

It's been freezing today.  Well, 50 with chilly wind seems freezing now anyway.  But, one can still hear the birds chirping blissfully, and so I still count the days until spring begins to act like spring.  Maybe it needs a Snickers. 

It's spring break for the girls and they are some of the few who get to keep their entire break despite the snow days.  They each have packets to work on instead of going to school.  My spring break is this week, but it's filled with sick children, sore throats (mine, especially), grading, and cleaning.  I still need to plan my syllabus for my summer course, but that will get done eventually.

School has been much better since the switch.  Nothing is perfect, and Snugglebug is really struggling in some subjects, so I try to remind myself to have patience with her (often unsuccessfully).  I don't know what the future holds for next year, but we shall see.  I just pray they go where they need to go, and where they're supposed to go. 

I look around at my mess of a house and long for more space...and a cleaner space, of course.  Six people is crowded in this little house, especially with surrounding neighbors, but we are blessed, so I then go on to give thanks for what we have. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015


Have you ever been in a funk simply because you finished reading a book?  My goodness...I read a trilogy recently, that I had apparently become too involved in.  I remember as a teenager I would spend hours in my room reading and rereading my favorite series, so I welcomed the guilty pleasure of an easy, albeit immature book series.  I ended up reading over 600 pages in one day, but then the end came.  And she died.  And I just can't figure out why she was slated to die.  To me, it was poorly written, poorly executed. 

Don't get me wrong.  I'm one who frequently watched movies just to cry--to be moved by something beautiful.  I've read book after book in which characters die.  But they die for reasons.  In this situation, I cried for 45 minutes, and now I'm not really mad at the author; I'm simply disappointed and silently wonder, "If she can be published, why haven't I written and submitted anything, given I can surely formulate a better plot."  No, I don't have nearly that amount of confidence, but that shows how disappointed I am in the writing I just read. 

Ok, perhaps venting will get me out of this funk.  Between the book and babies waking me up in the wee hours of the morn, I feel I need to recharge.  Perhaps with a good book?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Thinking of Quitting....

So although I write this blog to keep track of my life and to have some record of memories years later, I don't know that I'll continue.  I basically have this going because I don't feel I'm a writer unless I write...something.  However, I would really like to get back into writing, real writing for myself.  I've finally found time to deep clean a lot of my house, so I'm thinking moments of writing might begin again.  I hope. 

Christmas was nice.  I'll have to post the Anna hat I made Snugglebug--she LOVES it.  I started with a pattern that I completely changed, as usual.  Can I ever follow anything to a tee?  Nope, I put a spin on it all, to make it mine.  I consider that a good thing, unless my spin looks like an unraveled sweater on steroids. 

In other news, I just dropped a pan of THM stuffing on the kitchen floor, scooped it back in the pan, and while looking around, decided none would be the wiser.  I'll probably be the only one eating it anyway.  Hey, it's been a long day and that was over an hour of work!  (Ok 45 mins baking.)  It's still better than that chocolate pie you and I made for a birthday in Tucson, eh Angela?  lol 

Oh, for Christmas S bought be books....Yay!  But he bought the 3rd and 4th in the series...I'm needing the 2nd!  Talk about frustrating my urge to read!  Back to Orwell for me instead...

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a wonderful night!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Crochet Nuances

 Let's just say I've been crocheting a lot lately.  I mean, A LOT.  Need an auction item?  Crochet.  Need a gift?  Crochet.  Simple, right?  The above was my first go at a hat that included hair, made for Lovely's orchestra auction.  I used the Anna & Elsa Hat pattern and plan on recreating it again in the future.  The most time consuming part was adding the hair--the hat itself was around 3 slow crochet hours. 

And what Elsa hat wouldn't be complete without Olaf?  I used this pattern to create my easily falling apart snowman (he snaps back together thankfully!). Both items sold, but I don't think I got very much for them.  Oh well--every little bit helps! 

Then came the hat.  THE HAT.  I allowed Lovely to choose a hat pattern for her teacher.  She thought this resembled Indiana Jones (although it's 30s inspired), so this is the pattern I printed.  And about tore up.  Smart me decided to start the hate hat the day before giving it to the teacher.  I was introduced to two new stitched, refreshed on about three, and said, "I can't.  I just can't," several times.  I did learn I wasn't pushing the needle quite all the way through when creating stitches, so I did learn something on this tragic terrific hat-making adventure.  I actually want one of my own now, and I did add a brown and red flower to attach at one's will. At the moment, I can't find the pattern, but I'll link when I can.  I abashedly admit I searched patterns from easy to medium, so now I'm extremely intimidated with what may come later in my crochet career. 

I also crocheted a mason jar cosy for Snugglebug's teacher and another bobble headband for myself.  I  love seeing those stitches form from a simple ball of yarn and need to remember to crochet all year--not just when I'm off from work.  Lovely is insisting she wants to learn as well, so I started her out on chaining tonight and told her to keep trying to work even stitches so we can move on.  She decided to make necklaces with what she has ;-)