Friday, June 30, 2006

Convention Bound!

Well, I did it! I bought my convention tickets and plane tickets for Convention in Salt Lake City! Believe it or not, there is a funny story with this!

Michael was not on board with me going. Originally we planned to make it a family vacation and drive out and hit the Grand Canyon "on the way". But, with gas prices where they are and the fact that we spent almost $500 on gas going to his Granny's funeral a couple of months ago, this just became less and less of a reality. I really didn't want to go to Utah AGAIN without them. But, the simple fact of the matter is, we can't afford it. So I started to wrap my brain around flying out alone and going to Convention. Well, Michael was still not really on board with this, because it is still quite an expense. Our team had a training a couple of nights ago about less than supportive spouses. So, I made Michael listen while one of my teammates whose husband is a police officer talked. After he got off the phone I asked him what he thought. He said he should be more supportive of me. So I led right into Convention. I actually didn't plan it this way, it just happened :) Anyway, after a rather heated discussion he agreed to me going. (I better deliver in my business, though!) So after he went to work I decided I better hurry up and buy my plane ticket before he or I changed my mind. When I got the itinerary I sent it out to my mom and dad and trin and Jer and Mel. Mom writes back that she is confused about this ticket from SLC to Houston... ARGGGG@!!!! I need to fly FROM Houston TO SLC!! So I call Continental and the not so helpful person on the other end told me that if I had put my onepass number in while making the reservation I could change it in 24hrs with no fees, but since I didn't he was charging me $100!! Oh man, Michael is going to kill me!! So, I reluctantly let him change my ticket. Well, this just doesn't sit right with me. So, I call customer service and explain to them what happened. After talking to two different people I get the $100 refunded. Turns out this is a benefit of being a OnePass Member, and it makes no difference if I put it in WHEN I made the reservation. What a moron. Anyway they get that taken care of. So, next I call to schedule my tour of the facilities in Idaho Falls. Well, the only tour they have available the days I am there is the one that leaves at 10am Tuesday Morning. I am arriving at 10:06! There is also space available on Monday's tour, but I was supposed to leave to come home Monday morning. So, I get back on and cancel my ticket AGAIN and rebook it arriving in SLC Wed and coming home Tuesday. PHEW! What an exhausting process! BUT, I am going to Convention, so look out! I am on the move now!

Letterboxing in town

Can you believe this picture was taken near the heart of Houston? These sites are the sites that we see when letterboxing in town! I am continually amazed at what wonderful parks we have here.

We spent the day last week with our friends, Lois, Bubby and Sarah letterboxing. We literally spent the day! We had a wonderful time! We went to the Orange Show and looked around and I had an idea that when Melaleuca buys me a new car, I am going to turn my old car into an art car! Michael isn't exactly on board with this idea, but I will keep working on him! LOL!! We hunted for 9 boxes and found 3- I think this is an all time record of ours LOL!! (I mean fewest boxes found percentage). Anyway, it was a great day and I just HAD to share this picture!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Remicade and book thoughts...

Well, I made it through the Remicade infusion, and had to work Scout Camp all week. I thought for sure I was going to throw up on Monday, but I made it. Dr. Berman asked me if I would like to increase the frequency of my infusions and I said no, but did let him fill out the paper for the handicapped placard for my car. 31 and I can park in a handicap space. Nice. He then suggested that he do cortizone shots in my knuckles, because my index fingers are not behaving nicely (read don't close all the way). Well, that sounded like so much fun I decided to wait on that too. The thing is (aside from the fear of the pain having the shots will inflict) I am not sure of the long term affects of that. I think I read somewhere that that could speed up the process that ultimately disintegrates your joints. So, I need to read up on that a little. As a rule my doctor is pretty conservative, but I also know he felt sorry for me not being able to close my fingers, and this is just about the only option I have left. So....
Anyway, I enjoyed Scout Camp thoroughly and will plan on volunteering next year. I met a wonderful lady, who is a writer and mom of SEVEN! She also homeschools and she was like the calmest most laid back person I know LOL!! HOW does she do that? Anyway, she has some books out that are worth looking at. Not being mormom myself I believe I will start with Make me a Memory, though the Molly Mormon series does sound kind of good to me LOL! Maybe because I grew up in Utah, and therefore can relate to that lifestyle? I don't know. At any rate check out her website: . I am also toying with the idea of going back to my book. I actually started writing it about 3 years ago maybe and got away from it. Well, lately, it seems like God may be calling me back. (This is how I am now a homeschooler too LOL) Anyway, it is on marriage. I find it strange that I have been thinking about it lately, and then I work all week at camp with a writer, and then I read on one of my email groups and one of the ladies is considering divorce. Hmm.... Whoever said there is no such thing as coincidence? So, I may fire up the old computer and see if I can get that file off of it. I better have the fire extinguisher handy, though, cause it has been a while since I turned that computer on LOL!!! In the meantime I am going to begin a blog, where your comments are welcomed!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Six Flags over Texas and Homeschool Fair

Auston and Gregory riding Boot Scootin
Mikey and Gregory (note Gregory's look of fear and tight grip on the bar) and Calley behind them on the Sombrero
Plain Tuckered Out after a great day at Six Flags over Texas!
Gregory and Auston in Yosemite Sam's Ride, (pronounced YOS Mite Sam by Gregory!)
Can't remember the name of this ride, but Auston, Gregory and Calley enjoyed it! All in all we had a great time in Dallas with Michael's brother and his family. We went to Disney with them last year and we really enjoy vacationing with them! We started the trip off with a trip to Texas Christian University for the Duke TIPS awards celebration. Calley was awarded for outstanding performance on the SAT as a 7th grader! We are very proud of her! Then we went to Six Flags on Thursday. It was wonderful! There were hardly any lines at all, so we are all making a mental note to go back the same time next year! Our night ended in excitement when there was a drive by shooting at the cabaret next to our hotel! Needless to say, we will not be staying at the Motel 6 next to 6 flags EVER again! But all was well, and we had a fantastic time!!

We got up early Friday morning and headed back to Houston so that I could go to the setsha Homeschool Conference. It lasted Friday and Saturday and Michael went with me on Saturday. The kids were enrolled in their children's program for the weekend and they had an absolute blast! As for me and Michael, we have now purchased our curriculum for next year- There is not turning back now!! LOL!!

Seriously, we left the conference feeling energized and excited about homeschooling our children! I met so many wonderful people and just really enjoyed myself! For those that are curious, here is a snapshot of our chosen curriculum for this upcoming school year:

Bible: Picture This!: They color a page for each book of the bible and when you are done they have an illustrated page for each book, essentially their own illustrated Bible! It sounds more simplistic then it is, it is actually recommended for grade 4 and up, but I think Grego will do fine with it. I am even going to make my own!

Math: Singapore Math: I think this will keep up with both of them, and keep them on a fast pace...

Science: Great Science Adventure, Human Body for the 1st Semester: We will kick this study off with a visit to the Body Worlds exhibit at Houston Museum of Natural Science! I am VERY excited about this one!!

History: The Story of the World: This has a book that tells the history of the world in story format starting at the beginning. It is actually a 4 volume set that takes 4 years to complete. The workbook has gobs of extra activities to do with it too, like using dirt, rocks and grass seed in a roasting pan make your own model of the Nile and flood the Nile once a week to see how it makes the grass grow... Cool stuff!

In addition to the Story of the World about once a month we will do a Unit Study on a State and occasionly encorporate visiting that state if possible! I got a cool book to help with this called Cantering the Country to help with this, but I will encorporate my own stuff to..

Handwriting: Pentime looks like it is short sweet and to the point, so we will try that. We are doing A reason for Handwriting this summer, and they don't really care for it, so hopefully they will like Pentime better.

Language Arts: Learning Language Arts Through Literature. I am excited about this one too, it is written by one of the authors for the Great Science Adventures and I heard good things about it. I think it will be really fun!

Chess: Yes, Chess! We got a book/DVD pack and will be working on Chess this year!!

And finally, journaling. I got several story prompt books to choose from and we will journal daily. I am going to try to find a pretty nice notebook for their journals, because I have always considered them keepsakes..

The only thing I haven't got yet is a Spanish Curriculum. This seems to be more difficult that I anticipated, so I am not sure how that will work out. They will be taking Spanish at the Enrichment program, but I was hoping to do a little more with them...

Oh, that reminds me, they will go to the Enrichment Program on Tuesdays and there they will take Creative Writing, Spanish, Art, PE, and Science. It was recommended by the administrator, though to enhance the Science curriculum. So, that's it in a nutshell! I will keep you posted on how it is going!

Oh, one final thought: As I was watching the 100+ children from the children's program go outside to watch the man juggle the fire torches I wished I had my family members who do not support my decision to homeschool with me. The theory that homeschool children are unsocialized misfits is completely false. These were normal, well behaved children. If being well behaved makes you a misfit then that has always been my goal, homeschooling or not, so this shouldn't really be an issue.