Friday, August 28, 2009


I was cleaning up the kitchen and loading the dishwasher. We had pancakes for dinner and I had spilled flour all over the sink, which then mixed with water.
I had a flashback of being a child..about 9 or so sitting in our dining room. Our table was white painted wrought iron and had a round glass top. The chairs were the same but had avocado green cushions. The legs of that table started skinny at the bottom and widened up to a V to meet the table. Once, when I was away overnight, my Siamese cat, Snowy, fell off one of the chairs and caught a hind leg in a table leg. He broke it. I came home and my mom told me, I was 6 and I cried hysterically. He was at the vet, and was brought home later that day with a cast. That silly cat managed to get that cast off several times.
In my memory Im at that table. Im working on a school project and realized I was out of glue. I knew Dad would not be too happy if I told him this so late into the evening, so I mixed up some water and flour to make a glue, as I had remembered Dad once told me one could do that. It worked well enough, but I do remember the teacher not liking my project and I got a low grade on it.

I cleaned up the flour goo in my sink and loaded up the dishwasher. The motions of what I was doing reminded me of my mother. I used to love to sit in the kitchen in the late evening as a teen, and young 20 something and watch her clean the kitchen. She would finally be starting to wind down from her day of working, her face would start to lose the tension she had been carrying, her hair would be falling in her face, and she would be smiling. It was a good time to catch her to have conversations...or just to be in her presence. I found it comforting.

Tonight I wondered why it was such a comfort to be with her while she did this. I went back to early childhood memories. I remembered a light above the sink, a yellow portable dishwasher that I liked to sit on, a green refrigerator with an 8 track player on top of it. There would be mom rinsing dishes, and singing to the music. I would either be sitting on the dishwasher or on the table. Most nights she would play the soundtrack from The Rose, and when that song came on she would pick me up and dance with me. There was a "kitchen witch" that hung above the sink..for some reason my mom always had one. That time was our time together each night.

One of my last memories I have of my mom from when I was a child, around the age of 6, is one of those nights. We had our usual evening...but she seemed distant. A few nights before I asked her if she and Dad were divorcing..I had watched an episode of Silver Spoons and that was the theme..divorced parents. She seemed shocked and said "NO, where on EARTH did you even come up with that??" That last night though...she held me tight during The Rose, and she started to cry, and she told me that they were getting a divorce. She left shortly thereafter, and I didnt see her very much for a few years...just weekends here and there while she was in a halfway house. When I was 12 I did move back in with her...and every evening sat with her in the kitchen as she cleaned.
However...still to this day...I cannot listen to The Rose without bursting into tears.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Spitting Water and Katydids

This evening Gwen noticed a Katydid crawling on our living room window...naturally I figured it was a photo op. We went outside, and had some fun taking photos of the insect, and then the kids had fun spitting water at each other.
Running from Gwen who was spitting water at them
Synchronized spitting. ;-)


So my mom has developed Graft Vs. Host disease...which is a good and bad thing. Good because it shows the donor bone marrow is doing something, bad because too much GVH could make her very sick or even kill her. She looks very sunburnt, and her skin is peeling...I asked how she felt and she said like she was on fire. This past Saturday we had a family party for my nephew's 4th birthday, she felt well enough to be there. I took some photos of course.

What really shocked me was seeing how different she is looking between now..and May.
From SaturdayShe and I in the beginning of May
It's like she has aged 10 years in a few months. :-(

Thursday, August 13, 2009


The kids have had VCS this has been going very well. They all love it and have learning much about the Theotokos Gwen is very proud of herself because she has not cried-in previous years she has, and I have to come and get her.

This morning we arrived early. Add was asking his teacher about the water wars she had mentioned yesterday. She told him she likes to do them in conjunction with a trivia game. Add told her that he is really good at trivia. She agreed and then said that the wide range of knowledge he has is truly impressive. Add told her that he also likes to read the Encyclopedia of World History before bed every night.

Then, of course, she asked where he goes to school. Add and Eli replied in unison "We are homeschooled" Her eyes lit up and she said to me "THAT is the difference! I knew there was something! He isnt all bound up like the other kids his mind has been free to roam and has no limits with what he is able to learn! Wonderful, I think that is WONDERFUL!"

I was floored...I had been worried all week about his writing skills. LOL!

She is right, being homeschooled does allow a child to have a free kids pretty much decide what they want to learn and they learn it they way they as individuals do it best. Today the boys pulled out maps of the USA, and after figuring out N,S,E and W, they asked me to name off states, and they would compete to see who could find it first, and then name the capital. Pretty painless, and fun..they did it for about 20 minutes and had a blast. Then they moved on to seeing distances from a city to another city.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


I have a tendency to worry over where my oldest is academically...I never worry about my 2nd or 3rd kids...just the firstborn.

It started with reading...he was 7 and not reading, I was freaking out to my friends about it..not to him. I stopped trying to teach him, and the kid taught himself..and took off with reading.

Lately I have been concerned about his writing ability. My 7yo will write stories, and even make books...but my 9yo has shown no interest. Then yesterday, that all changed. He picked up a notebook and a pencil, declared he was going to make a journal..and proceeded to write.

Today he sat at the table and copied paragraphs out of a help him write better. His handwriting has improved dramatically as well. After he copied out of a book, he wrote his own little story about a detective.

Another lesson for me in trusting him to forge his own path and make his own way in his journey.

Friday, August 7, 2009


I am really trying to get things in order. I came across this planner and ordered it. I liked the way it was laid out and had not only the weekly lesson plan areas but also a section for weekly priorities and dinners.