Friday, January 24, 2014

The Arctic Blast Returns

Good grief it is freezing cold outside! It'd be great to try to blow bubbles and have them freeze the temperatures are so darned cold, if the wind would stop we just might try. But, the high wind gusts are placing us at -20's with the wind chill factor and I doubt I could have gloves off for the few moments it would take to blow the bubbles.

The Polar Vortex thing has returned and Michigan is freezing. The weather is more suited to Penguins than campers. After having spent last winter in KY this winter is absolutely frigid and every single one of us are talking about going back south even if we don't exactly have the money for it right now. Daddy's talking about moving down there permanently and selling our Michigan home, as long as the home we buy in the south has air conditioning. Even the dogs aren't wanting to go outside for the few minutes it takes for them to do their business (we're insistent of course, but they don't like it).

So, needless to say, we have not spent even half an hour outside this week playing. ECJ spent about 15 minutes doing some shoveling at our house and two neighbors, just to get the inch or so of snow off of steps and walkways.

Monday I woke up a bit late and when Daddy and I walked into the rest of the house it was to find that ECJ hadn't done most of his chores. Needless to say this didn't make for a good beginning of the day. Daddy and I spent about an hour sweeping, cleaning mirrors, and generally cleaning out of irritation. Lessons were late in starting and about five pots of coffee were drank between Daddy and I before supper. Mondays are always difficult for us because, well, because they're Mondays I guess. No one seems to want to do their lessons, I never want to get up with the alarm (this isn't just on Mondays though), and there never seems to be enough coffee to make it through the day. Daddy also spent a good portion of the day re-wiring the front porch, entry to the house, and one of the campers bedrooms this day ... all because we wanted a working front porch light! By the end of the day all of the wires had been re-run and every switch had a purpose. The scary plug in area for the wiring of the bedroom was eliminated, and our front porch finally had a working light!
We found where someone had literally wired the whole bedroom
into a plug inside of one of the walls!! Scary, fire hazard
type stuff!!
A nice five or six foot section
of wire in one wall that went
absolutely no where!

Our working front porch light!
Yes, Daddy had to open part
of the entry way ceiling to reroute some
not very well done wiring.

A working light for the bedroom, in
the right spot in the ceiling (wires no
longer running across the ceiling either),
and the light actually turns on inside
of the bedroom instead
of from the entry way.

Tuesday I blogged the entire day of our lives. The whole post for this day can be seen here. And when I say I blogged about our entire day I really mean it.

Wednesday, ah, you know sometimes I really love Wednesdays. This was not one of those Wednesdays, however. You see although our lessons were going well and even Peanut was not frustrated at all (mostly I'm sure to at that point being almost a full week without a migraine) we did run into one "little" problem. There was a tiny bit of flooring in the hallway that was lifted up at the edge, making for a possible trip hazard for both Peanut and Daddy. Daddy gamely went to fix it and managed that spot with no issue, the other side of the same board had another lifted spot we'd all been aware of for over a month but it's placement was such that no one was likely to trip over it. Daddy, decided to fix it while he had the tools out and he was already down on the floor. Yeah. Not fun. It turns out that our resident "not want to do my chores right because I have better things to do" kid had decided to sweep leftover bits of drywall and dust right under that little section of floor. This caused the area of the floor to lift and refuse to be tacked back down without the debre being removed, problem being to remove the debree a large section of floor had to be pried up ... meaning that now a six foot by three foot section of the hallway floor has been torn up. There's another two layers of floor underneath where it was but to fix this problem we now need a section of wood that will cost us about $30 to purchase. Fun... Our only real bit of fun all day was the fact that Peanut insisted in doing her lessons while being a princess, which meant Mommy and YCJ had to talk in bad accents and refer to each other as Princess and Queen in very polite tones. This did lead to a discussion about "the good days in palaces" and what it might have been like, which somehow led to a discussion on chamber pots (nope, I don't really get it either hehe) and the looks of disgust on the children's faces were priceless. 

However, if Monday and Wednesday were a pain in the neck Thursday was a different type of day all together. Peanut had come into Mommy and Daddy's room late at night with a small headache and the fact that she was awake at all with the medicines in her was mildly unsettling. So, we'd given her a half dose of the pain medication prescribed by the neurologist and quietly settled her back in bed. When the sun was up it was apparent that she had a migraine. A full dose of the pain medication was given and she was snuggled back into her bed, excused from class for the day. Sometime after 1 PM, after a bout of nausea which resulted in a mess to be cleaned up, she felt good enough to play quietly in her room. For the most part this meant that the Cracker Jack's and I had uninterrupted lesson time. YCJ managed to get all of her work finished for the day without any issues and went to spend some time with Peanut with a very low playing movie. ECJ spent some time working on his research for his Michigan project... 

And so, we come to Friday. The day my children look forward to all week long. Spelling tests aren't the favorite thing for the day, however both Cracker Jack's managed to pull of A's. YCJ got her first 100% on a spelling test ever and ECJ missed two on his test for the first time in over a year. Peanut finished both Thursdays and Fridays lessons while YCJ managed to finish all of her work for the week. ECJ did not fair as well (more on that in a minute). Daddy had let Peanut and I sleep in for a couple of extra hours, Peanut had crept into our bed last night as she was chilled and wanted warm snuggles and for the first time in a long time she slept with us all night. Daddy started the day's lessons almost exactly on time and his only complaint when I wandered out of the bedroom with Peanut was that today's assignments were almost all English (for a man whose brain is better working with numbers than letters this can be a minor irritant). I managed to get all of the lesson plans for next week finalized and part of ECJ's grading for the week finished. Almost as soon as both girls were finished with their lessons they wandered off to YCJ's room (goodness that bed is messy!) to watch a movie together.

I keep using this photo because it is one of the
cutest ones I've ever snapped of her!
PreK/K is still moving along at a great pace. After looking at the amount of work left for Pre-K, Peanut should be ready to move on to mostly Kindergarten level work the first week of February. She is already into Chapter 3 of her K science book from ABeka and completely enjoying it. She only had one migraine all week long on the new medication which is much better than three a week or so. She did end up with another dose of the pain medication before bed on Thursday as her head was still hurting, but woke up without any pain to complain of. She's almost completely finished with her Caillou computer learning game for preschool, just needing to finish out her letter games as we focus on that letter each week. And she has reached a point in her Caillou kindergarten learning game for the computer where she's finding it a little more challenging because of the memory games, so we're adding more memory games to play for "fun". She's gotten more rest this week and it seems that it's improved her mood slightly. I doubt she'll ever be a happy go free type of gal every day simply because she's very oppositional, but I'll take even a few days a month of her relaxed and happy at this point. She also finished her Michigan state flag this week (yes, by herself) and will be doing the Kentucky state flag next week. She enjoys hearing stories about the states we're doing and although I'm doing these as part of our state history studies (for only MI and KY) I may just do something similar next year for part of her United States History work.

3rd grade has suddenly seemed to start making sense to YCJ. Spelling, which before she dreaded, is suddenly "clicking". Math isn't driving her as batty and English (though still far from her favorite subject) is getting finished at a relatively steady pace. If I were following the lesson plans that I could purchase with her ABeka Language Arts materials she'd be a few lessons behind, but with her dyslexia she's better at the pace she's going by far. She's finally getting a chance to study her favorite animal: the penguin and has requested that we study each species of penguin which I am more than happy to do with her. She's also agreed, after some reading in her health book, that she's not a very good looser when she's playing games and that she doesn't like to take turns. She spent a good deal of time this week playing with our animals and helping Daddy feed the dogs.

ECJ when he learned that he had to re-do chapter one and
two review for health as he hadn't done them
And 6th grade. ECJ can sometimes surprise me with the things that pop out of his mouth. This week one of those things that popped out was during his health chapter 3 review ... "Udderus ... Mom, I can't find the definition for udders!" Imagine the look on my face. "Well, son, that could be because you're supposed to be looking up the word UTERUS. You do know what that is right?" This led to a discussion about what animals have udders and that human females do NOT carry their unborn children inside of udders. He also had to look up the word placenta ... which caused another discussion that he appeared highly uncomfortable with. He also apparently wants me to have more gray hair than I should as when I was grading his weekly work today (he's the only child I grade weekly as I'm trying to show him that he should be able to be trusted to have his work done on his own) I discovered that no work was shown for any of his math for the past week (a no no), he'd skipped some of his creative writing assignments ("because I didn't think you'd notice"), and I'd completely refused to look at his English work because of this. He also discovered that we meant what we said when it came to the homework policy. This coupled with his "anything I want to do is more important than my chores" attitude have me dreading when he becomes a teenager in 12 months.

Next week, Thursday, I'll be sharing how our homework policy is working for us. And in the main it is working as it should, encouraging the campers to do their work on time and correctly without too much hastle. I'll show you the steps we've taken to make this more concrete for the children and what type of reward system we've put in place if they manage a month without homework.

And now a few words of wisdom from Peanut: "To be smart you have to think about being smart and then let your mind go wild!"

A few photos just for fun: These are of our new addition Squeeks cat, who apparently cannot stand to wait for the can to be opened to attempt to get to the tuna inside!

And I am going to set one of my posts this week apart from the others. It is a subject that is very close to me, and it means very much to me to have as many people read it as possible. It is my sincere prayer that it will help shed some light on an issue that CAN be helped.

Other posts you may have missed this week:
Finding Foot Prints
Week 3 Winter Bucket List Link Up
Maybe We'll Stick to the Menu
5 Little Blessings
Just Another Day (Tuesday's post)
Drowning Out Noise

This week we're linking up with:
Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers
Homegrown Learners
Faithful Mom of 9
Great Peace Academy

Find us on Facebook here or subscribe to the blog for tips on homeschooling, book reviews, how to get your children helping out in the kitchen, and to see many pictures of the cute kiddos, plus much more!


  1. Chrystal I am tired reading all you do! What a blessed family you have. I hear you on the cold. Here in NY we are cold but we like it! I hope your weekend and week are blessed and that Mondays turn around!


    1. This week was rather tiring actually lol. I hadn't realized just how much we did do until I was writing the wrap up. And each and every day this week was different for us which isn't our norm nor does it make for a relaxed Mommy. I lived near the mountains in NY as a child and I remember the cold, I've never really enjoyed the cold (having spent half my life in KY) and now it's almost unbearable for me. Thank you for the positive thoughts for our week and weekend, I'm sure they both include lots more time inside! But, I have a few things up my sleeve so that maybe the kids don't dive me as batty.

      Mondays ... grr Mondays I've never really had a good Monday my whole life but they could certainly be easier on us!

      Thanks for commenting!

  2. I can relate to the struggle with your son. I think it might be a bit the age. I can hear my son saying those same things.

    1. It's only been getting worse for the last six months or so ... I just wish he'd do what he's supposed to do. *sigh* It probably is the age though.

  3. Udders! Lol!!! I'm sure it wasn't at the time, but it will be someday :). Uggg on the floor! Maybe a good project for your son to help on? If he's able? Our cat is so similar. She is an outdoor cat, but we feed her. She would happily trip me over in the driveway then wait till I get all the way to her bowl. :)

    1. He'll never forget how to spell it or pronounce it again LOL that's for sure and it was pretty funny but I had to keep a straight face because if not I never could have finished the lesson! He's helped on many other projects around the house so yes, he will be helping his father to fix the floor and part of the material cost is coming out of his snow shoveling money (that he's attempting not to spend so he can buy lots of phone time for his new pre pay phone). We're hoping it'll teach him to be more careful and responsible. :-) Cats are so silly sometimes! I couldn't believe when she started licking the can yesterday before I got it open all the way, so I had to try again today and that's when I snapped the pictures LOL

  4. What a lot of activity going on up your way. The weather is crazy cold. I know it is nothing here like it is there, but we sure aren't used to it.
    Blessings, Dawn

    1. It's crazy cold everywhere right now. The wind is terrible here one top of it, yesterday as I wrote this it actually blew in one of my windows that I hadn't locked ... it took my husband and I to get it back in place and lock it!

  5. It's amazing how much you do in a week. It's cold here in Ohio too, so I can't imagine what it's like up there where you are. Thanks for linking up This Week at Great Peace Academy.

    1. Thank you for hosting the link up! I really enjoy reading what everyone shares there. It's far too cold this winter for my tastes that's for sure. You know, the funny thing about people being amazed with how much we get finished every week is that when I read what others do each week I tend to think the same thing LOL

  6. Wowee! You had quite the week! Don't ya just love when a seemingly quick and simple task becomes a 6 X 3 foot mess? I also regret sleeping late, yet not enough not to shut off and ignore my alarm! We are also experiencing this cold, frigid weather. I'm so glad that I don't have to go out in it! I hope this week has been an easier one for you!

    1. Supposedly simple projects that become much more (especially when it comes to "fixing" the house) drive me batty. And I haven't stopped turning off my alarm in the mornings yet either hehe. Yes, this week has been a bit easier for us so far and boy am I grateful :-)

      I hope you're week is going well!!!