Friday, December 25, 2015

Our Christmas

Happy birthday, Jesus, and Merry Christmas

We spent our Christmas Eve watching our traditional Christmas Eve movie watching: The Santa Claus while following Santa on the NORAD tracker.  We read our traditional books Santa's workshop and elf on the shelf.  We had read Luke 2 earlier in the week at bedtime.
This morning, going through the Santa gifts
Santa's visit early this morning
More Santa gifts, lounging pants
         1 millionth game of Harry Potter trivial pursuit played before and after dinner.

Now we are watching A Christmas Story. We watched it last year but neither of us could find the movie stored right in front of us.  We just kept overlooking it.

My parents came over this morning to watch G open gifts from me.  While here dad picked up pecans in my yard.  Mom's hip was hurting and couldn't help him.  She needs to use a walker, but she won't.

I managed to get the lumos/nox decal on the light switch and the ministry of magic decal on the toilet seat, both Santa brought to G.  Two to go on the wall and we have one more coming for the wall, all Harry potter related.

Well, off to continue spending time watching movies with G.  Good bonding time for sure.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Eve

Christmas puzzle time.

Mom and I are watching The War Room. So very excited for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas Happenings

At the Pink Palace last Saturday to see the Polar Express in 3D.  I had to shut my eyes only once which is pretty good since I do get car sick.

Other than that, our festivities begin tonight at my uncle's.  I am off work tomorrow by the kindness of my boss so possibly church at noon.  G wants to stay awake tonight and watch movies.  Hoping there are some good prime Christmas movies ready to watch.  Then tomorrow evening we have Christmas with my parents and then it is our following of the Santa on NORAD Santa.

We are in the midst of severe thunderstorms and threats of tornadoes.  Christmas day is supposed to be in the 70s.  Good times! Good times!  Love shorts at Christmas.  Don't get me wrong we very rarely actually have snow at Christmas, and I am truly okay with that.  We have 4 seasons it is just that usually the snow comes sometimes as late as spring.

G is hanging out with my parents playing on the computer I am sure.  I worked today and went to lunch with the boss which was fun.  Sort of invited myself along but they didn't mind.

Looking forward to a long night of movies.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas Cards

So if any readers to the blog received Christmas cards in the past and have not yet received one now; it would be because I have misplaced my address book.  I am sure I placed it somewhere that I would be able to find it easily; however, I can't remember where it is.  When I find it I will send the rest of my Christmas cards.

I will update the blog with new pictures of our Christmas activities.  They haven't been much.  I still can't believe Christmas is here already.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Can't Believe It's Almost Christmas

So from today backwards: G and me at the 3D Polar Express Movie

The Elf in the Candy

G at her school Christmas program


Her Christmas program turned out to be a presentation of learning.  The little statue thing became this 12-14 size thing and there were three titled the Exquisite Corpses.  They played a game inspired by the game from the 1920s called telephone or something where one person writes part of a sentence leaving a few words seen and passes the paper to someone who adds to it until it is a nonsensical story at the end except G's school played the game with animals from the area.

The artist then took all the drawings and brought back 15 cardboard miniatures. The kids teamed up and the artist sent the kids out around the school and inside the buildings to photograph textures and patterns and then he taught them how to make the textures etc on the miniatures.  Then he chose 1 from each of the 3 classes to build into statues.  G and her two friends made the one shown here.
Then the blues singer, Kenneth Jackson, (I don't know him) came and helped the students write a Christmas blues song.  All three classes did really well and he helped them perform the songs.  The whole thing was over in about 45 mins.  It was great.  The blues singer also taught them about the history of the blues and the components to a blues song so this was also part of their learning.

The beautiful blue shirt G has on was an emergency purchase of G, my dad and mom sent on the mission Tuesday when I was notified by tarjay the shirt I ordered specifically  because it was supposed to be here Wed when I needed it was going to be delivered on 12/18.  Now it isn't even going to be here until 12/21.  I am taking it back.  I don't need it and the shirt they picked out is absolutely the best color on her.

She is out of school now until January something.  Christmas is completed we are just waiting for the day to open gifts and have Santa visit.  We put the tree up ($15 from WallyWorld) today and got it decorated after I remembered where I put the lights last year.  I was beginning to panic then I remembered and no G didn't remember.

I received G's school pictures Friday too.  Now we need frames to gift the grands with one (from G).  I have to work though my mind keeps wanting me to believe we are done with work but we aren't!!  G has a friend over tonight.  Usually Sat spend the nights are a no-go for us but parents were in a pinch so she is going to church with us tomorrow too.

Here is our finished tree.  Finished it up by 11:30 then headed to lunch to meet my friend and her son then off to the movie Polar Express.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Not too big

Yesterday's Elf mischief

Last night at the Delta Lights with her friends, this is the good bye hug right before we left.

Today at the Bass Pro Shop to have a photo with Santa. Both girls had their photos made because they aren't too big, yet.

Working on the Christmas village and all that left over sugar icing that they ate by the spoon full.


G has had a very good weekend. We were also successful in getting my dad's Christmas present for clothes to knock about in at home courtesy of the Bass Pro Shop. So something he didn't need but I know he will wear because he wears flannel pants in the winter so this will give him another pair to do the same. G had her best friend stay the night since we met her new best friends at the lights last night. Now I have the left over cleaning to do that I didn't do earlier today.

I remembered what I was going to blog about and that is the indulgence of a grandmother. Friday morning I stopped for gas and there was a grandma and her very young kindergarten maybe grandson for whom she bought an unnatural blue drink and mini m and m's on the way to school. So okay, then I made a comment to the check out person about the sugar high that kid would after they left, as I had seen him literally flicking his ears back and forth with his hands. She said, "Yes, and that is everyday." REALLY?! every morning this grandma gets this kid sugar on the way to school then hands him off for to teachers. And we wonder why some boys have trouble with attention deficit issues...

Friday, December 11, 2015

Elf and updates

Driving on a north pole license

G is making her tree to be all Harry Potter

last night waiting on the town Christmas parade

G's tree topper elf

Last weekend G and I were able to clean up, put away and throw away items and finish G's room.  This item above I thought was a turtle and told G that.  She fell into a fit of giggles and said it was a picture of her putting her bunny in a swimming pool.  She said when she was 4 and one day when I was taking a nap she drew this picture.

She said I had told her to draw a picture like rapunzle did in her Barbie movie.  Rapunzle drew her dreams, so I had suggested G do the same.  G being the literal thinker as all 4 year olds are, drew her dream that she had the night before where she was swimming.g and she took bunny with her, heh. We had a good laugh about that.

In other news. I am taking a break from choir.  They didn't extend the full time position to our newest director for whatever reason and I am taking a long break.  That gives me back 1 night a week, anyway.  I was going to do so before this last guy was hired but decided too give him a chance.  Now however since they termed him Sunday I felt this was a good and proper time to break.

God's timing is always perfect; not necessarily when we want or think it should be but always perfect.  Some holiday financial pressure was relieved in two unexpected ways.  I am grateful for the relief.

There was something else about which I wanted to blog but have since forgotten it.  Maybe later...


Tuesday, December 01, 2015

School Photos 2015

Personally I really like the photos. The company though has a serious restriction on packages and won't allow many options. I copied these off the site but only for the blog. I am ordering the cheapest package and one extra 5x7 for my parents.

I ordered this one below for the package.  Her smile is more honest in the first photo though.



Monday, November 30, 2015

Thanksgiving Weekend

What we did:

Painted G's bedroom two different colors. Blue and green on opposite walls. It looks so very good. These are pictures from Saturday night as we started hanging pictures and putting things back in (still not finished).

It took us from around 10am to roughly 10:30pm for us to paint, clean up, run to the store for frames and the new curtain and put things back.

G attempted but not very hard to sleep in her own room last night.  She made it to 9:45 before she gave up and came to sleep in her normal location.  Personally, I really like the colors and the room itself.  There is enough stuff to keep it little girl with just enough stuff to make it look like she is growing up.



And G's elf came back Thanksgiving bringing a toy. Friday found it playing with G's $5 pool table. Saturday, it decided to hang out in a vase with stuffed flowers that decorated G's room. Sunday, it apparently tried to hang out with G's homemade snitch we hung on the fan.

And this morning it apparently was stopped midway of zip-lining through the dining room.

So we still have a few more things to hang in G's room and my living room and dining room make me want to cry.  We have lots of stuff to store away and really not sure when I will ever get around to it.  Hopefully some things can go into the attic.

As for Christmas and her room, she wants some vinyl Harry Potter quotes on the wall. One I ordered having to create it as it isn't a common quote sold.  The other I have ordered from Amazon.  She also wants to buy her own fake tree and her own ornaments.  I don't really want her to do so but it is her money.

We put up a live tree on the weekend G gets out of school for Christmas.  And if the living room isn't cleaned out I may not even do one this year!

Friday, November 27, 2015

He's Baaaack

And G couldn't be happier.  He brought her the Lego Ginny from Harry Potter. Today he was caught playing pool with her $5 burning a hole in her pocket pool table from Fred's.  Seriously....

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Monday, November 16, 2015

2 rooms down

2 colors to go.

prepping the wall

color on the wall
So I am not necessarily crazy about the crystal rapids color in the bathroom but G likes it.  It looks better with the shower curtain and mirror back up because it tends to mute the color some what.

Now all we have left is her bedroom but that is 2 colors and she has a lot of stuff.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

November Update

A Great Big Thank You to all of our military and families of our military.  Your devotion and dedication keep us free.  I will never forget that!!

The Halloween Spending the Night Party went well.  G was very tired Saturday.  G had a rough day that Friday with some mean girls at school.  Seems two girls who had already voiced their disapproval of G and her friends got mad that they weren't invited to this party held by one of G's friends.  What makes it worse is there is a girl who goes between the groups stirring the pot.

These mean girls confronted G and made one of her friends cry then proceeded to tell G and another girl that their opinion of them is not like or dislike just don't care at all about them.  G said her throat got tight and she wanted to cry.  I had already warned her about the pot stirrer and not to believe anything she says ever.

I hope G will take my advice and won't let this girl continue pulling these kids in the drama.  She was at it again today G said and even this girl's best friend who is a boy said she has turned into a mean girl.  I wish the teacher would do something about it.

One thing I don't really like about the school is the all on one side focus of saving the earth.  The problem is it is focusing on evironmental-ISM not just ideas about the environment.  Environmentalism has become its own religion.  Saving the earth is a moral works for salvation on the left, thus the draw to punishing people for not agreeing with "global warming/cooling" or "climate change."  Seriously, calls for jailing  the so called "climate deniers" is fascist and scary.  I have no problem with the idea of showing ways to not pollute but please show both sides of the argument as there are two sides.  That teaches critical thinking skills.

Have you seen the article about plastic bags are good for you? See another side of the argument. I purchased James Delingpole's book Watermelons. about the green movement's true colors to read to G for the other side of the argument. She won't read it herself so I have to read it to her.

So the ribbon cutting ceremony and the convocation took place last Thursday. It was very nice.  The mansion is absolutely amazing.  My parents came so I was able to tour with them the buildings.  The school day ended at 12 so G convinced me to take her to Walmart to see its "inner beauty."  She really had some money burning a hole through her pocket.  She purchased a blue tooth keyboard for her phone.

Not much else happening.  G's second presentation of learning is coming up next week.  The kids grouped up to build marble drops and G and her partner's won a presentation spot.  There 3 groups per class being shown.  They had to be voted on and G's was one of the winners.  Her teacher told her and her partner how proud he was of them because they giggled so much he really wasn't sure they were doing anything.

Beginning in January is the confirmation class for G at our church.  I am conflicted about this somewhat.  She is being required to have a mentor and therein lies the rub.  She doesn't really want to ask any grown-up, and I would be very selective anyway.  I just can't see anyone agreeing to be a mentor and giving up their personal time to do so.  It is only for 4 months so maybe we can find someone who is grounded in the Bible and willing to give time.  It is a good idea in theory.  We will see.

So G is now at my parent's church in a middle school Bible study.  I am glad this is an option though I doubt she pays attention really.  She just mostly wants to see her friends from her old school which that is good too.

I will try to post pictures later of some of the fun things at G's school.


Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween Today and in the Past

Typed on Friday, October 30:

So we packed G up to spend the night with a girl from her new school who is having a Halloween party. Plus the school was going to allow tricker-treating to the businesses around the town so the kids dressed up at school. As I was driving to work after dropping G off I realized we forgot her essential bit of equipment, AKA her wand. OOPS!

I haven't heard from her.  She also forgot the paper glasses she made and the red marker because she wanted to be a female harry potter.  She is going to be furious with me, but she wasn't exactly that helpful with the packing.  I will call this a learning experience and natural consequences.  She can add the stuff she forgot tomorrow night at the fall festival to be complete.

I have to be up VERY early in the morning to pick her up because she is about an hour away, and we have a soccer game at 11.  I hope they have a good time.  I hope I made a good decision about letting her go.  The mother seems really nice.

One of the girls wasn't able to go and I think the hostess couldn't invite her old school friends due to possible other activities going on with the old school.  It will be a small party but maybe a fun one.  And just like that, she's grown, harumph!

Anyway here are some posts from the past. You are more than welcome to see what she has been dressed as in the past years by clicking the links.  There was a time that I was fairly creative.  Now, not so much...

2005: Cheerleader but I can't find the picture which was basically just a blur anyway due to the sugar high she had.  She did look cute in her costume though. This picture was taken in October or September of 2005 and she wore this outfit for Halloween but this was a family visit.



2006: Cheerleader but it was cold so she wore a coat, picture above taken at home.

2007: Birthday cake

2008: Artist and at school a 50's teen which she hated

2009: she went as nothing and we didn't participate in Halloween that year due to her own behavior the year before.

2010: Aquarium

2011: Doctor

2012: Magician


2013: Cowgirl at dad's church and a Zombie for our church

2014: soccer player but too lazy to capture a picture apparently

Happy Reformation Day or All Hallow's Eve

Monday, October 26, 2015

Ready for Hogwarts or Halloween

So I allowed G to spend her own money and purchase an official Gryffindor sweater from Universal. I don't believe I have ever owned something as expensive and I assure you I have never owned something so itchy. So the day came and I was notified the sweater was delivered. This is her response to that notice and to seeing it the first time.


Then on Saturday I had her put the whole shebang on for photos. She made her wand with a dowel rod and hot glue then painted it the way she thought it might go. I won't let her take the official universal wand we bought last year for fear of it getting broken so she is taking this one.



Now she is off to Hogwarts through the Pink Palace in the next city. We saw the final Harry Potter movie Saturday. The PP is doing this series again and G said she wishes to go so I suppose we will be on the lookout next year for the dates.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

characatures

Perfect replicas I think.


I would like to get these framed and hung in the house somewhere. These were drawn at an employee appreciation day. I also won a gift card from home depot and we will now be able to paint some more rooms over thanksgiving.

Friday, October 09, 2015

School Update and other Ramblings

I met with the teacher yesterday about G's baseline language/reading and math tests.  Sadly, her public school math experience even being in a gifted cluster which should have been advanced left G at a 5.7 grade level over all in math.  One area of the test was left in the 4.62.  Basically, what that says is that public school math failed the GT kids and really failed the non-GT kids.  So G's new school will focus on the things she hasn't yet mastered and get her into her proper grade level.  She, on her own, once these deficiencies are mastered, can move farther along; however, the teacher's goal for G's math is up one grade level min.

I am not upset with G on her scores.  I am very disappointed in the public school that was focusing for 3+ weeks on teaching kids how to take a test that isn't being offered this year anyway instead of teaching math.  Think about how bad it is for the school to not have the gifted kids master their whole school grade math level.  We were specifically told the kids would have advanced math because they were in the gifted advanced cluster.  Or rather they would go faster through the math program than the others, and this particular test showed that my child didn't even finish the 5th grade level because that would have been 5.9 or 5th year ninth month.  And before anyone questions her actual understanding and abilities in math, she has As the whole year in math.

As far as her language, the test was divided into comprehension, in which she scored high 11th grade; spelling and vocabulary, at 8th grade and 4th grade respectively (vocabulary ended in 4th grade in the public school so there you go); and language recognition in which she almost scored outside the test receiving a high 12th grade level. The teacher's concern is finding appropriate aged books in her reading level that she will enjoy.  I let her know that if there are concerns I will read it with her for explanation and navigation through the difficult parts, adult content is the biggest concern.  I am not worried about foul language because Mark Twain used it, CS Lewis used it as did JK Rowling.  I also let her teacher know that she needs to assign the books to G to read and not give her an option or else the books won't get read.

History will be taught (and is being taught) through reading and research of individual people and happenings surrounding the people which means I will probably have to fill in a whole lot.  Science will be applied probably not theory at all and will be in analysis and working to make the school sustainable via gardening etc.  It will be very interesting and I have been very concerned but not overly involved due to the school just getting the foundations laid.  Next year if I see no progress, then I will not hesitate to voice my concerns.

G is really loving the kids (except 1) in her class.  She is already worried that next year she will be left behind but I told her and had it reaffirmed that if she pushes her self and excels they will move her up with her class. Of course I don't need her graduating school early but this is sort of like guided home school where she will move at her own pace and I am so very glad.

With regard to the 1 kid G is not fond of, apparently there is an unrecognized potential diagnosis.  This kid can't read social cues at all.  This child was pulled out of public school due to bullying and now I see why.  This child irritates the kids so badly doing things like chasing them with sticks, and other annoying behavior that when the kid or kids being annoyed strike back as kids are wont to do, this child cries bully.  Anyway, this child gets in trouble every day.  It is sad for this child and this school is small enough that the disruptions are able to be handled but this child is still very disruptive. Hopefully, the parents will do what is necessary and get this child help.  All of this is from G's description of what goes on during the day.

Now on to the uniform, G's should be in soon and she is not terribly upset by the fact that it is a skirt. I purchased her a pair of Tom's for winter dress shoes and uniform and then dutifully patted ourselves on the back for the good deed of Tom's donating the pair to needy kids, heh.  Anyway, I will try to get a picture of her in her uniform to post when it comes in.

Other than that, the cutting of the ribbon for school is coming up.  I hope my parents will attend with me.  G will be on the founder's video.  I am rather excited to see it.  G's project is going well and I feel much better about it after speaking with her teacher.  I think they will learn and grow through the experience.  I won't be able to attend though.

Bible Study Fellowship is going wonderfully well.  I am thoroughly enjoying it and oh so glad the strict rules were relaxed.  That is all for the update for now.  Going to make dinner now.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Some Recent Photos




The first is what greeted me this morning at work.  This train was waiting for another to come by.  I talked to him a minute after waving to him because he looked bored.  I told him we live by the tracks.  He said his train doesn't go that far but he knew where I was talking about.

Also, greeting me this morning when I woke her up, totally spread in the bed. This is a queen size bed.  She kicked me all night and no, she isn't ready to sleep alone.  She likes to talk at night so I find out lots of stuff while falling asleep, some good some bad.

Then this year they play goalie but she doesn't like it.  She looks cool but she doesn't like the blame when she misses.

My mom has been wearing the same white shorts and shirt for over a week.  I wish my dad wouldn't let her do that.  It is fall now and all of a sudden she isn't cold.  Two weeks ago she was bundled up like it was snowing.  This is such a strange disease.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Needing to Update

Just to let the interwebs know, G loves her school much more than she is willing to admit.  She has friends and is learning to make things with her hands.  I have questions about what academics other than math and language they are focusing on such as history and science theory, but I think those questions will be answered sooner rather than later.

She is doing applied science with the maker studio and gardening etc.  They have a well known photographer/filmmaker teaching them photography and film for their 1st 6 weeks of maker studio class.  That is interesting.  They have built a smallish hydraulic system which is pretty cool.  They are working on a marble track and G is loving that.  She is partnered with a girl that has become a friend that may even become labeled as a good friend.  G's perspective.

They have taken the myers-briggs personality test of which G tested as a ISTJ.  She thought that was absolutely fascinating.  She thought it was very cool that she and George Washington have/had the same personality type.  Funnily or not my personality type is INTJ.  So I see that though G can read on a 9th grade level and pass tests given based on facts, she makes no leaps in analyzing or reading between the lines so that is something we will need to work on because there are a lot of inferences in books that she misses, and now I understand why she doesn't get it.  She also gets so hung up on facts that it is frustrating to get her to move on.

Next week they will take the baseline academic tests to find out where each child is.  They are all on the Khan Academy for math starting in the 5th year to work up to their public school grade.  We have used Khan Academy before to explain difficult math concepts.  The videos help.

G totally talks a lot about school and even asked if I was surprised that she was making friends.  I told her I thought she might find some kindred spirits.  She received a water bottle that she now not only carries her water to school to drink since the school's water, according to her, tastes funny, and she doesn't want to lose the bottle.  Yesterday she accidentally left it at school and wanted me to make sure her teacher would find it and keep it for her.  That is a big deal for her to want me to text and ask the teacher to find it for her and keep it.  Just one example of how I can see she really does like the school.

She is in a group to work on the presentation of learning.  Their chosen topic is recycling.  Two things, though, the head mistress on the first day mad a poor generalization about people who wear glasses being smart and then this week generalized about tall people being natural leaders.  I was no happy about this coming back to the kids.  G immediately decided she needs glasses to be smart and she stresses already about being tall.  So yeah for generalizations, ammiright?

I do not regret putting G in this school.  The doctor's who take her to school and pick her up seem to be working out well, and G and I like them.   So far so good and I will keep this updated about her school.

For me I started attending Bible Study Fellowship that is being hosted in our church.  I am so excited about the study and being back in BSF.  G will have to go with me every Thursday so there will be 2 late nights in a row until BSF ends.  But it will be so worth it.

Okay, that is it for now and I am sure I have left things out.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

happy smiling faces

Finally, school begins. Due to some unanticipated challenges, school began today instead of Tuesday. G. was less than thrilled to be finally off to school. But she put on a smile for me as you can see.


They have a class pet, a 6 month old dog. A very hairy dog. Hopefully no child is allergic. Anyway, parent orientation is about to begin. Lot's to learn...