Sunday, January 15, 2006

Snow!

So it's been raining for weeks on end (seems like). I was awakened this morning by a phone call from the pastor's wife. "Better move your car. The snow plow is coming." (We live on church property and park in the church parking lot.)

Snow plow??? When we went to bed last night it was raining! And here there was about 6 inches of snow on the ground when we woke up. Surprise!

It's wet and sloppy, but the kids had fun making a snow man this afternoon.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Winter doldrums

..::sigh::..

The winter doldrums. Gray, wet, chilly days. Not even any fresh snow. Dark at 4:00 p.m.

..::sigh::..

And we're not even half way through January yet! It gets kinda depressing.

So... I guess it must be time to count my blessings. Here are some things I thought of to be thankful for even on short winter days in long winter months!

* A warm home. (It's tiny, but it's warm and it's home!)
* A fireplace. (The best feature about our crowded little house!)
* A contented husband to cuddle up with!
* Healthy, fun kids. (Most of the time!)
* The internet to "escape" on when the weather outside keeps me in.
* Free public libraries! (One of the best inventions of all time!)
* A cute, mostly-well-behaved puppy who makes us laugh.
* Plenty of food in the freezer for making hot, home-cooked meals.
* And that things are as well with us as they are.

Saturday, January 7, 2006

birthday party

We had a birthday party this afternoon! We invited the "girl cousins" over for a Hawaiian themed "party". One of the things I planned for an "activity" was experiencing fresh tropical fruit. I bought a pineapple, a coconut, a mango, and some kiwi fruit. The pineapple was a big hit. The cousins had never tasted fresh pineapple, but they ate it as fast as I could get it cut up! Kiwi was familiar and popular. The mango had mixed reviews. Some liked it. Some didn't. (I tell you what, the mango is one strange fruit to cut up! I guess I had never tried one before. I could only slice wedges off the side of it. The middle was hard, but pulpy. Weird. Maybe I need to learn about mangoes before attempting to serve one again!) The coconut was hilarious! The kids were really looking forward to it. They were sure they wanted to drink the milk. When my husband finally got it open (with a hatchet) most of the "milk" had leaked out, but there was enough that they could each stick their finger in it for a taste. Apparently it wasn't what they were expecting because no one asked for more than just that taste! And no one cared for the "meat" much either. They said they liked grated coconut better. I told them that was because grated coconut was sweetened. So now... I need ideas of what to do with a fresh coconut!

Monday, January 2, 2006

State Library

We just got R signed up to get audio books from the State Library by mail. It's a "free" (i.e. tax-supported) government program for the blind and handicapped. She qualifies because she has "an organic disfunction" that prohibits her from reading at grade level. We had to get an MD to sign for it, but her doctor was happy to do it. She's 10 and can barely read first grade materials. Actually, both girls have learning delays but they both love to listen to stories on tape. We have a bunch of Adventures in Odyssey, Sugar Creek Gang, and Your Story Hour which they really enjoy. And we have exhausted the audio books available from all the public libraries in a 40-mile radius! So we are super-excited that this program is available for our family. We got 5 books and the player to start with. As we finish a book we can just pop it back in the mail and they'll send us the next one on our list.

I know the kids will enjoy having a bigger variety of books to choose from, but the most exciting part for me is that since we use Sonlight Curriculum (a literature-based homeschool curriculum) about 2/3 of the books I need to read to them for school next year are available on tape! That will allow me extra time to concentrate on one-on-one tutoring subjects such as spelling, math, and phonics.