Thursday, January 20, 2011

Trying New Things

Did I mention that I have started taking Karate with my 6 year old daughter? I started on Monday. It was fun but a little weird because I was in a class with kids about ten years old and under. Not 100% sure I will keep up with it. Over the years I have gotten used to solitary sports like running. The group thing has me a little intimidated. Wish some of the adults in the group had been a little more inviting. Not one adult spoke or acknowledged I was there except Sensei. Maybe that's the way it's supposed to be, the higher belts don't acknowledge the peons without a Gi or a belt.

I'll stick with the karate for now. I did belong to a karate group in high school, but when I learned I had to demonstrate Katas in front of people I decided it wasn't for me. I also hated being used a punching bag for ten year old boys who didn't think it was a bad thing to hit girls or grown ups.

I have also committed myself to helping teach archery to the co-op kids. I am really excited about it. My son already has his bow outfit ready. I will need a bow too but I will wait and get one after we get started. I really need to be doing my homework on the bow shooting. We are doing it through 4H so the kids can get credit for it.

Co-op starts Monday for PEAK members. We are already excited about it. We are going to be participating in Science Explorers, The Science of Cooking, Geography, and Archery. It's going to be a busy fun filled Monday.    

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Homeschooling Documentary

Thank you Natalie and Laurie for sharing the link and YouTube trailer for this documentary.  How do you guys find such great stuff?  I can't wait to see this when it's finished. Go to for more information and how you can help.  The documentary is focused on three American families on their quest to educate their children outside the school system.

We are half way through our first year of homeschooling.  So far I am very impressed with how much my kids have learned and improved.  My Son couldn't read a story fluently then after a couple of months he was reading like an adult (leading me to wonder what it was that he actually learned last year in third grade).  My Daughter can read really well and is really enjoying math.  My son is learning division this week.

I am using and Saxon math for both kids.  I have opted for  more self directed learning and they are really doing well.  I am always there to help when they get stuck.  We are attending homeschool co-ops, scouts, dance, karate, and music lessons.  Formally they are educated in math, language arts, science, and social studies.

I have a puppy that was really good about eliminating outdoors and now is not.  He can make it through the night in his crate without an accident.  It seems as though if I'm not watching him no one is, and he is supposed to be my Son's responsibility.  Thankfully we have time to train a puppy.  My carpet is taking a beating though.  I woke up this morning to my dachshund in my face he was really excited (unusual as he is the biggest couch potato ever).  I got up and the back door was wide open and it was absolutely freezing outside.  Smart dog he let me know something was wrong, I am so impressed.  None of these dogs want to go outside in the cold.

Take a look at the trailer for the movie, and visit the website.  

Thursday, January 6, 2011


I have been staying up too late and in turn sleeping late, so have the kids.  I kinda feel guilty and I kinda don't.  Isn't that one of the perks of homeschooling?  The sleep schedule I have adopted through the week wreaks havok on the sleep schedule I need to have for the weekends working at the hospital.  I kinda live for Mondays when I can sleep as long as I want. 

On the weekends when I work I can go to sleep no problem but I can't stay asleep.  One reason is I have a neurotic cat that thinks it's cool to go in and out during the witching hour.  I let her out and she scratches at the weather strip on the outside of the door until I let her in, my husband is oblivious to the night time happenings at all times.  Did I mention the cat is 15 years old?

I have to admit I am rather impressed with my kids progress with the homeschooling.  My nonreader reads great and my unmotivated child has learned to love a challenge.  Which leads me to wonder what was going on at school.  My son has finished 4th grade language arts (with good marks) and is starting on 5th grade.  I think it's sad how unmotivated he was.  My children love to be challenged and praised for their good work by their teacher (that'd be me). 

I have to admit that public school teachers have their work cut out for them.  However that is not good enough for me.  I refuse to pay for private school when I can effectively teach the same curriculum at home.  Not to mention the hours of homework and fighting that went on after school.  My kids were tired and burned out, so was I.  They want the parents to do all the work and motivate the kids but they won't let you anywhere near the classroom.  Why all the secrecy?  Why so much homework?

It's not easy to homeschool your kids especially if you are used to having no children at home or work full time.  I work full time on the weekend and teach the kids through the week.  If it was easy to homeschool everyone would do it.  I am not radical hippie, buck-the-system woman or a religious fanatic.  I just want my kids to learn from me, not kids at school or yelling screaming, uptight, and overworked teachers or school systems that have their own agenda. 

I am planning to homeschool them as long as I can or as long as they want.  Will I homeschool through high school?  I don't know I will cross that bridge when I come to it.   

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

New Year New Thoughts

My Husband wants to challenge me to a "biggest loser" contest.  He proposed this idea last night.  I need to take off the pounds I have gained since I quit smoking last year, and he is at his heaviest weight ever.  We need to get on a diet and exercise program.  My husband seems to think that I can lose weight easier than he can, I on the other hand doubt that it will be easy.  My Mother has used the Suzanne Somers' diet and she seems to be able to keep her weight in check.  I have never really been on a diet before.  I have used "slimfast" before but only because I found it hard to eat actual food before a workout, it was cheaper than other liquid supplements, and has about the same ingredients (it doesn't taste bad either).

We haven't decided what the incentive will be for the winner.  We all (including my son) need to lose about the same percentage of weight.  I find that very interesting even though we are different we have gained about the same percentage of weight over the last year.  We also went out for a long walk after dinner last night.

The only thing I don't like about the Suzanne Somers' diet is that she forbids caffeine and all sugar.  I can deal with the sugar depletion but caffeine  My Mom has done it, and I only drink one large cup of coffee in the morning.  You can have decaf coffee on the diet.  Caffeine withdrawal is rough it causes a headache so bad that won't even go away if you take something for it.  If I withdraw slowly maybe I can get off the stuff.  Apparently caffeine causes insulin levels to rise causing a drop in blood sugar and messes up your metabolism and makes you gain belly fat.

By the way I need to lose 22 pounds.