Tuesday, September 28, 2010

"I don't like to read."


"I don't like to read."
Today, after Bible Study, I took Connor and Ki to the library. We had about 40 minutes until it was time to pick up Gavin from class. He normally bikes, but in this heat, I didn't think it the wisest of ideas.

So we get to the library and drop off a very overdue book. It was one of the 3 very overdue books we have right now. But the only one that could be founds.

Connor (15) and Ki (14) find a comfy seat. I suggest they find a book to read. Ki tells me;
"I don't like to read."

He doesn't.

Connor wanted to be squirrelly and spend the time reading all the signs backwards.

We were sitting next to the shelf that houses books in DISEASES. I was scanning the titles excitedly deducing which of these wonderful selections I wanted to devour first!


It just doesn't get much better than a good plague!
So I sit down and start reading the book about PLAGUES.

Page 2 starts with something like...
"Within a few short days hundreds had fallen ill. Early signs were fever, hoarseness, and coughing. Soon the ill had swollen tissue, severe headaches, vomiting and diarrhea."

I take the book to Ki and tell him what an awesome book! How many books start out like this!..... and read it to him. I read onto the next paragraph.
Next thing I know h is holding the book and has decided he wants to read it.

There he is. My self-professed "I don't like to read" child... reading away.

Connor sees a book on the paperback display. He comments on how funny the cover is. It is all white with a picture of a baby chicken...... upside down.
that's it. With the title across the bottom....
"flipped". Connor thought that was VERY interesting!

We talked about marketing techniques as Ki goes over and gets the book with the Flipped Over Chick and starts reading it.

Connor is still having fun reading the different signs backwards and counting dots on his chair.

Ki has now read parts of 2 different books. Not bad for a kid who hates to read.

Then we got Gavin and went to the mall for lunch. (100 is too hot to eat at home)

After lunch we go to the $1 Bookstore where Gavin finds 5 different books on computer programming and programming languages. (I found 3 murder mysteries). I pay for the 8 books and G wants to go explore the other side of the Computer Texts Shelf and spend is $20. I told him to get through these 5 books first.

No "real school" today. or yesterday. Or last Friday. or last Thursday.
Just lots of Life Learning. We'll get to some planned lessons tomorrow.

we spent a 4 day weekend at Feast of Mars.

Monday, September 20, 2010

I {HEART} Mondays!

PhotobucketI do. I love Mondays. I look forward to my Mondays!
The weekends always feel unorganized and slapped together. Mondays are BACK TO SCHEDULE! (I love my lists and schedules)

Tuesdays have become hectic. Gavin bikes to college class (9-noon) and I have Ladies Bible Study (9-noon). Now C&K will be babysitting (playing with preschoolers) during Bible Study. I know after all that Ki will not be able to get back into lots of schooling, so Tuesday will be easy fun stuff. This means I want to Make Monday Count!

It was a good day.
I made waffles for Breakfast. Ki sifted the flour with his new flour sifter he got for his birthday. And Bacon.

The boys slept in till 8:15, so they did their morning chores after breakfast. Then it was time to fill water bottles, clear the table, and go out back for some stretches and Brain Gym. Just some Criss-Crosses today. Connor and Ki did their stretches standing on the porch chairs.

Inside they all sat around the table to take notes. I never had them do school at the dining table before. I had a school table we'd use, but they outgrew it.
Today I wanted to teach them about gerunds. I wanted to learn about them actually.

Looks like they can be a simple thing or possible complex. We stuck with simpler today. I liked this site: The Gerund and then we did some extra reading onn them at wikipedia. The boys wrote a few sentences and then had fun pointing them out in conversation through out the day.

Next was Research Time. Ki read inhis science book about cows. Connor did some science experiments from his CD Rom course (apologia) and Gavin did some independent research on the ADS; Active Denial System- military weapons .

I did some of my Book of Daniel Homework while they were doing that.

After Lunch the boys did math. Ki did Life of Fred on his own. I often read them with him and we do them together, but he is doing a few chapters he did at the end of the school year last year as review- so he said he'd do it on his own today. Afterwards he was explaining some of it to Connor and they had their calculator out calculating stuff.

Connor and Ki watched about 2/3 of A Christmas Carol on Netflix. It is the play/musical for which they will be auditioning. Gavin worked on his PSAT practice stuff.

Then they cleaned in their rooms.

Gavin is also doing something on his computer. Some program with music. I'll have to ask him what it is. He also worked on drawing eyes today. link: (YouTube Instruction for drawing a photo-realistic eye).

Now it is abut time for dinner. I think we'll play a game afterwards. Maybe GLOOM!!!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Got Milk?

We don't. We did. Not anymore. I was awakened by a GLUG-GLUG-GLUG sound of liquids being dumped. For a brief moment I did not know what it was I heard, then my brain fully woke and I instantly knew Ki's Super Sniffer had struck again.

He had dumped 3/4 a gallon of milk. I had just purchased it Friday. I used a little last night before bed with my chai latte. It was FINE. His nose thought otherwise, so he dumped it.

Last Year he called me into the kitchen concerning the milk. He said it smelled funny. I sniffed. It Stank. I told him it had gone bad and to dump it.

Now whenever he thinks the milk doesn't smell 100 percent like he thinks it should, he dumps it. This is the 3rd time(recently) he's dumped a newly purchased jug-o-milk.

Ki will sometimes eat yogurt, but after the 3rd bite he'll stop eating it because '"It smells and tastes different now." He has overly sensitive sense of smell and taste. It's why he is SOOOO picky with food I think. Everything smells funny. He used to run out of the room crying due to the smell of cooked rice or cooked vegetables. He can stay now, but has to have them scooted to the far end of the table and he hold his nose sometimes.

He used to refuse Burger King Chicken Nuggets half the time (which was one of the few foods he ate) because they "smelled different than they did last time" or were a different shade of golden of brown than he thought they should be.

Out here in California a gallon of milk can be $3.50 or more. I told him today that next time he thinks it smells bad, to just put it back in the fridge and tell me. I'll smell it and determine if it does indeed warrant dumping down the drain.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I am in a Womens Bible Study. We are studying the book of Daniel. I decided that on Wednesday I'd do a Book of Daniel Class with my boys.

I think they enjoyed it. The didn't complain once about having to take notes and write things. Ki is my biggest complainer if that activity, though, and he loves Church and Bible History.
I read chapter 1. We went over the big names. I read the actual name instead of the pronoun when the Bible used the pronoun & used the name when it just said "the king" or "The chief eunuch". Ki really liked the name ASHPENAZ!

We learned some words. Eschatology and eunuch. eschatology if from 'eschatos' (late) and 'ology'(the study of). and the word eunuch means 'bed keeper'. "eune" means 'bed' and 'ekhein' means to keep.

We went back to the Tower in Babel and how that land became Babylonia. gos sent the Israelites out of that land, then they were captured and brought back to that land.
The drew maps and looked up Bible Verses. I gave them a list of Bible Verses and told them I'd pay them $1 for each one they memorized.
They have a list of names for spelling test next week. I promised treats for correctly spelled words.
I don't normally bribe them for learning, but it's fun from time to time.

This morning I wanted to boys to start with their science so I could have them doing something while I got caught up on my plans. Ki wanted to research acting and got upset when I assigned science. He's really great and coming up with school stuff to do on his own, but really needs to handle it a little better when he's assigned 1 thing when he's planned in his head to do something else.

Gavin did his last Physics Test. Connor did an experiment in Science. Ki read a bit then chose an animal to study next week. I'm having him research an endangered animal. I think he chose Lemur.

Ki and Connor had their Thespian Class and I worked on their Daniel Study. (it was taught after Thespian Class). Their Class Projects day is Oct 15 and they will be auditioning for the Christmas Musical/Play.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Cabbages & Kings!

Ki Oct 2003

'CULOO, CULAAY, no work today,'

'We're cabbages and kings!'

Connor slept in this morning. I don;t blame him. I was SOOOOO tired! I had an upsetting dream and the cat made a huge commotion in the middle of the night....and I am still coughing at night.
Why Connor was overtired, I do not know.

I rarely wake sleeping children. I figure if they are asleep they need it. Another homeschool perk- getting extra sleep when we need it, without it putting us behind.

I read in Story of the World about Charles the 6th. Charles VI (vee-eye), NOT Charles IV (eye-vee), because he was 6 not sick.
And Joan of Arc.
And Henry the 5th. Then they watched the first half of Henry V, with Laurence Olivier.

Ki read about horses. There was a chart that described the hoof sequence for different gaits. Ki also looked up some videos on the different gates. Then I told him I had an idea. I said ; "Ah-Ha!!! I know what I should have you do!!!!!!" while looking at the pictures of the hoof sequences. He replies with. "oh, no. Are you going to have me be a horse? I only have 2 fee.........Oh. I get it."

We go out and he demonstrates the different gait sequences and tells me about them, then he quized me and I have to crawl around like a horse and demonstrate my hoof sequence knowledge. I cantered invertedly at first and had to be corrected.

Ki shouts "YEAH we're horses!..........no....NEIGH! We're horses!!

Brian put away Gavin's science disk and we didn't find it till later. He researched Carbon Nano-Tubes and took notes and explained them to me.....twice.

Connor did some reading in is science and said he doesn't like double experiment weeks. I asked him why he had spearmint. I never see his notes, he often doesn't take them, he does his experiments and never even tells me about them and can never figure out what the review questions are talking about. And gets As on the tests. Connor the Conundrum.

After lunch Ki and I did Life of Fred. Neither could remember where we left off, but we had just done a couple chapters, so we just started over. Ki agreed review was good and we should just start over. He did a few Brain Gym exercises to start off and had a bottle of juice. He likes having juice and a snack when he does his math. He told me his favorite math was Miquon (which I think he remembering much more fondly that reality, LOL). I think the Life of Fred has been the best fit for him. I know what he lied about the Miquon that he doesn't get in LOF, with Miquon, we could choose which pages he wanted to do when in what order. Life of Fred is a book, to be read in order. Ki loves stories though, so he is usually OK with it. Which reminds me.. I am watching "Hoarders" and it is scary- so much reminds me of Ki. and the stories the Hoarders have for every little item....

We did some cleaning in the computer table area and then we played Pandemic. The blue bacteria won. We lost the game.
(oh, that was funny.... "we lost the game".......HA! )

Gavin did some SAT practice. Connor did some ALEKS.COM (math). Apparently only MY laptop works for ALEKS and NETFLIX and Connor's Science- so we need to figure out a schedule for laptop use for people to get their school done.

Brian took C&G out to get birthday gifts for Ki. Ki and I grabbed dinner and watched Alice in Wonderland (Disney). He wanted Del Taco and I had a turkey burger from Natural Cafe.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Orange you Glad I said Ninja?

I feel as though I have been run over by a truck. Ninja Class has been a bit hard on me this week. My gluteus ninjamus is still sore, but are my bininjaceps and the my Abs. Is eating worth the pain of walking down the stairs to the kitchen?

as I am watering my tomatoes, Ki is talking to me. He says he thinks he'll do lots of writing for school today. I remind him it's housecleaning day as we are having friends over for dinner and games. He says he'll have to do his writing inn his free time. I asked what he is writing. Character Descriptions for goblins and orcs.

We went to the neighbors house today to ask if we could pick some oranges from their tree. She's a sweet, little, old lady. She told us we could pick as many as we want, but we'd need a ladder- as they are high and hard to reach. she said she can't reach them.
we picked a big bag of oranges to give to her (and a big bag for ourselves.) She was so thankful! Ki told her to be careful because there was a small rip in the bag. She said;
" if any fall out I'll just pick them up. I'm not going to waste any of these."

We're having friends over for dinner and games.....

and freshly squeezed Orange Juice

-- Signing Off,
Your Friend the Geriatric Ninja

Thursday, September 9, 2010

[ insert evil laugh here ]

OUCH! I have ninjaries. Injuries sustained at Ninja Class. Really they are sore muscles; so maybe they are Ninjalgia. (Ninja + myalgia).

Ninja don’t need to use the restroom, do they? So I’ll be OK. And when I learn to fly, I won’t care about the pain involved in ordinary walking and climbing steps. Ninja’s fly…right?

My Gluteus Ninjamus is very sore.

The boys and I played MAD SCIENTIST UNIVERSITY. It’s a game about making up little stories about inventing evil scientist inventions of DOOM.

So, I got my best Dr.Horrible impression going and wrote my name on the moon with radioactive cake and spied on hippy-do-gooders at their tree-huggin’, song-singing, touchy-feely camp out. And laughed an evil laugh of an evil scientist. MWU-HHA-HA!

Then Gavin left for his Art Class and C&K read for science class and I watered my plants… with radioactive fertilizer supplement, so I can grow Cuke Nukes. BWAHAHAHAHA!

Ki was reading about elephants. He found the islands of Siberia on the map, we looked up The Elephant Graveyard online (I told him about it, but didn't know much, so we looked it up), and I had him read the poem about the Blind Men and the Elephant. Tomorrow he'll make Elephant Skin. (fruit leather)-

Ki decide to write about Goblins and Orcs. I had Connor clean off his school shelf. I wiped the table down for round of games….. GLOOM!!!! Gloom is Connor’s new card game. MUAHA!! (that’d be a Hawaiian evil laugh)

I won.

We learned some words and reviewed some forgotten words while playing. Words like Cadaverous, Topiary, poltergeist, vexed, and more.

Topiary reminded me of They Might Be Giants song C is for Conifers- so we listened to that.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

[ insert snazzy title here ]

We are having an 'extra-unschool week' here.
I have not had the boys do anything that looks like 'school work'.
MONDAY- was a Holiday- Brian was home,I was not. They did stuff. Not sure what.

TUESDAY- Brian took off work to fix the van. The boys helped with van repairs, watched a Danny Kaye movie about Hans Christian Anderson, and played on the computer. Gavin went to his College Art Class. I had Ninja Class in the evening.

WEDNESDAY-that'd be today. They played on the computer some, then I taught them some new Icehouse games. Then we played some new games and some old games. They wprked on game design- coming up with ideas for new games. C&K worked on their skit and went to Thespian Class. Gavin made Fried Rice for the 2 of us. Gavin has been working on some computer programming a lot today, too.

THURSDAY- I just plan on more game playing.

I love game playing. I love that the boys are always making up games. I also love that they all bike to their classes on their own!!!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Oh Happy Day!

It is so quiet in this house!

Gavin is away for the morning at his art class.

I told Connor and Ki to "do something" (towards 'schooling')

Connor is quietly reading a library book.

Ki was looking up varies rodent animal groups online. He is reading in his Science book. This chapter is about rodents (and similar animals- like rabbits). The book names some families of rodents that is doesn't talk about, so Ki is researching them.

Gavin is always researching things. When he takes breaks doing his physics, he will research astrophysics (how is that a break from doing physics??) or weapons or weird animals.

Independent Learners.

That has always been my goal of homeschooling and it is what my boys have become. It makes me very happy!

Gavin has transitioned well into his (one) college class. We homeschoolers get a lot of remarks about how our kids won't do well in college b'c they don't know how to "___ fill in the blank___" b/c they haven't "gone to school"- which I know is bogus- but it's just nice to actually SEE that.

So, I am happy.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


"Why is the world in love again? Why are we marching hand in hand?Why are the Ocean Levels rising up?" (TMBG)

Because it is time to rethink my schedule. (or because They Might Be Giants released an album in 1990)

I come to you tonight with clean fingernails (in preparation for LooneyLab Nail Art) to describe to you the events of the week that have led me to making a birdhouse in my soul (and rethinking my schedule)

I am normally somewhat of a morning person. I do like to be up at a reasonable morning hour. For me that is 7 AM, not 4:30 AM. I'm a morning person not a Crazy, Middle of the Night person. At 4:30AM, it is still Middle of the night.

I hope you are not sick of all my rattling on and walk out the door.

See, the catch here to why this schedule is not working it, well, confidentially, I am just not fully recovered from the bronchitis. I thought I was so cool, but I guess not yet. I still need extra sleep, which equates to sleeping in a little later in the mornings.

So, I need to go to an afternoon schedule. I think a couple weeks of that will be all that is needed.
I would go to a totally, Play it by Ear schedule, but with all the scheduled things we have during the week, I need to make sure things get done on time.

Tuesday/Thursday Gavin is away from 9-12:45. Starting Sept 14, I have Bible Study on Tuesday during that time block. I will be home with K&C on Thursdays at the time. I think Maybe Thursday Mornings should include some activity with just me and "Frick & Frack".

Today C&K rode their bikes to their Thespian Class. I was home with Gavin. We played a game and then he went to do some research and study for his science test. We played WORD on the Street. It was fun to play a game with just Gavin. And he didn't beat me!!

Which reminds me, I need to grade Connor's Science test. I think I'll take some school papers with me to Strategicon this weekend.

Hmmmmm, and what will our C&K do on Tuesdays at home by themselves without even Gavin to maintain some semblance of peace?

I want a rock to wind a piece of string around......


Gavin is 17 now. I have kept him alive for a whole 17 years folks!!

He was asked if he wanted a cell phone, w/ texting- He gave his dad the "Are you SERIOUS??" look... " no"

He was asked if he wanted an iPod and he said "no". He knows he can use mine whenever he wants and listens to youtube onhis laptop.

What did he have on his list?

Mechanical Pencils

extra lead

Money towards a new laptop

A NICE backpack


A couple specific Computer Games

Drk Chocolate

He has had Mechanical Pencils on his gift lists ever since he was about 6. he stopped putting LEGOS on the list when he was 15. It was a sad sad year for me......

Yes, he got everythig on his list pretty much (no blueberries but we have some in the fridge and , well, too many would end up going bad).

His younger brothers wrapped a penny in layers of tape, out it in a bowl, put the bowl in a box. The also had an empty package. And then one with a computer game. They hid them around the house and had written out clues. When he got home from class they pelted him with Nerf Darts from their homemade blowguns. They so full of giddy giggles as they waiting in hiding for him to come home.

below: Some of Gavin's Line Design for his art class >>

Below:- Ki hid a gift in the bottom of the cat food holder. It took awhile to get to it


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