Thursday, September 25, 2008

Witches, flying monkeys, and glow in the dark yarn

A lot going on these last couple of weeks.

Let's start with witches.

To summarize an e-mail I wrote about this event, here we go:

We went to Busch Gardens last weekend and as is typical, Jake's dragging me through all of the haunted mansions where they are in costume and jump out at you. While I do admit it fun to
be scared, well, they have this down to a science - let me tell you. My heart was beating a mile a minute.

We came upon a group of "Witches" that were huddling and I thought they were going to scare us but I heard one of them say, "Is she okay?" so we stopped. She collapsed in my arms.

Jake and I immediately went into action. We start removing her mask (did you know that some masks ZIP???) We finally remove it and she's VERY hot. Her eyes are closed and I'm concerned she may have heat exhaustion or even heat stroke. Jake gets water for her and starts
removing the gloves she has on. We work in tandem getting rough vitals and statistics from her - she has no idea what day of the week it is or who the President is. I'm finally able to get from her that she has high blood pressure and her list of meds. Jake is sitting beside her compassionately speaking to her and giving her sips of water as she then explains that she's hit her head. He then helps me check her head for a wound. (Closed wound)

Once first aid gets there, I'm able to give report and we get blood pressure readings of 160 over 100 WITH medication. Ugh. Jake jumps in with expert gait training and moves her to a wheelchair. As an aside, I wasn't very impressed with their first aid employees. Take caution if you go and get injured.

When the EMT arrives, Jake is able to explain what has happened with side notes from me. The EMT asks him, "How did you know what to do?" Jake answers proudly, "Boy Scouts!"

I was very proud of him for not losing his cool but moreover, for the compassion he showed for the woman.

It was good to know that my medical training came back "Just like that."

Flying monkeys? None, really. I just think they're funny. :o)

Glow in the dark yarn??? YES! Bernat has glow in the dark yarn! This has to be one of the coolest things I've ever seen! My first thought was, "What in the world am I going to do with this after Halloween?" Then it dawned on me! Baby's favorite toy that's always getting lost? Now it's found. "Where's that other mitten?" Now you know! This is sheer brilliance! My only critique? "Worm White" should DEFINITELY be "Glow Worm White"

And... shiny object syndrome strikes again. I'm making Christmas ornaments while knitting another drive-thru sweater, and in the meantime, cross stitching an orchid picture for my mother for Christmas. I'm trying to get my hand-made Christmas gifts done before November 1st. Lots and lots to do!

As an aside, I seem to be still hat-alive. My assassin told me she mailed my hat two weeks ago but I've yet to see it (good!!!). HER assassin has contacted me. MY target has contacted me... it's all so very strange, elusive, and confusing. Lots of fun, however.

What's in your lap that's occupying your time?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Let there be peace on Earth...

... and let it begin with me.

Tonight, I'm making it begin with me. I had the misfortune of being sent a website about White Power (why I even capitalize that is beyond me.) The site focuses on homeschooling as a way to separate ones child from other races and religions and then goes on with the typical hate speech we thought ended in the 1960s in Selma, Alabama.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for Free Speech and the First Amendment but really, what company in their right (Reich?) mind would even want to associate with a website like that?

Well, I'll tell you what company, Dreamhost.

If FoodLion (a local grocery store chain) posted signs that they'd only sell to White people, I wouldn't shop there and you can be SURE I would tell my friends not to.

So, friends, I'm asking you to not use Dreamhost as a hosting site for your website. 

Most hosting companies have clear standards of sites they'll allow (and that includes NO tolerance for hate speech.)  For some reason, being a Nazi is okay with Dreamhost and attacking other religions or races is okay with them too.

They have a "no child pornography" rule on their website (showing that they will INDEED put limitations on free speech if it gets THEM in trouble) but they obviously have little regard for child safety if they allow a site on how to teach hate to children to remain.

Even the Supreme Court placed limits on the First Amendment, my friends.  So has our government under the Patriot Act. 

The First Amendment is precious but I think that Peace and the message of Love is even greater.

It's WJWD.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hat or Death?

This is the hat I made for the Hat Attack on Ravelry. Lots of fun. Lots of concentration broken with my little ones running around but I really like it.

I knit over 10,000 stitches in under two days. That's amazing even to me! I hope my "target" likes her "sweet taste of death". If nothing else, it will keep her from catching her "death" when it's cold. :o)

I got a message that my assassin has mailed hers. It's beautiful! Cream, pumpkin. She told me I'd die by pumpkin pie. :o)

This has been a lot of fun!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Let me check my list

Lots of new shiny objects - so many, in fact, that I've been away for a couple of weeks while I get "sichiated."

School started for us last week. That in itself was enough to drive me to drink. Usually, I theme teach. I pick a subject: Trees, for example, and each "grade level" will have their work to do.

3rd grade would maybe be to find out how to age a tree (counting rings); identify barks of some trees; what it means to be a "native" plant; list 5 native trees; leaf rubbings and identification of trees by leaves; search for items that come from trees; read/write tree poems; visit an arboretum; etc.

6/7th grade would do the above and label the layers of a forest, define an ecosystem and find 10 animals that use trees solely as their habitat; plant trees for an eco-project; research what it means to reclaim wood & write a report about it, etc.

10th grade would do all of the above and carve or make something from reclaimed wood; research local threats to trees; work on petitions or other political cause for trees; etc.

Easy peasy, right? I mean, honestly, you can see how simple this would be.

Apparently, even though it wasn't broken, I decided to fix it.

This year, we did Oak Meadow curricula for third and 7th grade. Jake's working on Biology, Chemistry, Business Writing, Business Math, Government (and volunteering during the election), Speech/Forensics/Apologetics.

This is in addition to: Boy Scouts (both boys), SCUBA lessons (Caleb), Equestrian Vaulting (Caleb and Katy), Girl Scouts (Katy), American Heritage Girls (Katy), 4-H (all of them), Select Soccer (Jake), Lazer Tag League (both boys), Ballet (Katy), and odd things here and there like auditions for music, modeling, etc.

Who called this HOME schooling?

With this much busyness came total melt down. No, not from my children.... from ME.

I don't mind the extra curriculars. It really does give me time to knit while I wait for practice or knit while I wait for scouts to end or sew or cross stitch or paint, whatever. :o)

I learned from some wise people on a homeschool list I'm on to delegate and that made the world MUCH easier.

What made it even MORE easy was to give THEM a list. I'm famous for my lists of things. For some reason, it never dawned on me to make THEM a list too. Voila! Worked like a charm.

This has left me some knitting room!!! Another sweater in the works! This is a pattern from Lion Brand with Wool-Ease yarn.
Connor has two pairs of brown pants and I thought when I got them, "What am I going to do with these?" Then I saw this sweater and... well, brown has never been my favorite (except in the form of brownies), I think this is cute.

Speaking of cute, I got this new book "Cute Stuff." I've already started on the bunny hair bands. They're adorable! I can see the pile of monkeys being on an overall for Connor too. So fun.

I finished a ballet sweater for Katy but the assembly was horrible so I have to undo it and resew it.

I'll post pictures of that when it's completed.

Next, I make a list of Christmas gifts to make.