Falling Off the Wagon

I seem to have fallen off the blog wagon again. Fall is always a busy time, but this year my days have been flying by. I often wonder how the day can pass so quickly, and my boys can be so busy.  With Ally at school three days a week, I envisioned spending more time with the boys, and school being a breeze.  Let's just say we need some adjustments to our school schedules. 

Now last year for art, we would end up drawing pretty flowers and other appealing pictures. Without Ally participating though, we seem to be stuck on weapons, big trucks, and Ferrari's!



Speaking of school, our girl is thoroughly enjoying it. She is everybody's friend but has one particular girl that she is close to. This makes another "BFF" for her as she still loves spending time with another homeschooled girl in our neighborhood.  She (or the martian that has stolen my child) comes home from school and immediately gets to work. Her incentive? More work on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, means more free time on Tuesday's and Thursday's.  Ally's social life never seemed to skip a beat when we moved out here. However, for the rest of us, it has taken a while. I've purposely been making little bits of time for myself to spend time with new friends whether it's meeting up with a friend at school before the kids are let out, meeting for a cup of coffee with other moms, or just meeting our homeschool friends for "recess".  

I also am learning something new myself.  Our gym offers tons of classes. I'm not a group workout kind of girl, so I tend to ignore the schedules. Recently though, a Tai Chi class caught my eye. I've always thought there must be something to it considering how seemingly healthy the older adults are that participate.  I thought it just might be a good form of exercise to increase range of motion and core stability regardless of how I'm feeling. It's been a welcoming crew in the class and they've gladly taken me in and taught me the steps one on one. I'm discovering that you don't just complete a move either. Feet have to be pointed at a particular angle, and hands and arms have to move at a certain level too. I think it's been nice though to be learning something just for myself.  

I've mentioned my Goodwill addiction. I enjoy perusing them just to see what I like, what I want to redo or ask Eric to redo. So when I saw this "lovely" little table the other day for $12 dollars, I bought it.  I liked the way it looked, or rather, the way it was going to look. 


Before you start thinking "poor Eric!",  I'll have you know that he enjoyed working on this project.  And he did a great job, too! 



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Booties


And what booties did you think I was talking about? 


I went in for dog food and came out with something extra.  Sneaker booties for a buck. As you can see, she's is mortified. Ally, however, has had a good laugh.  

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Just Smile

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hanna, dool, set, net!

These two guys were so excited to be taking TaeKwonDo this week. Jake was standing so proud in his uniform. Grant has done this before and had earned his yellow belt. However, it has been awhile and he needs a refresher so white belt it is! As soon as he got home, he was googling "how to count in Korean" because he had forgotten how and it was driving him nuts.  We've started working on our Chinese vocabulary again, and I'm been surprised on how quickly Grant picks it up.  We may just have a little linguist! I've been thinking about breaking down and buying the Rosetta Stone program. Has anyone used it before? 

The same day as TaeKwonDo, the boys met with their new piano teacher. I was excited about this and they initially were as well. But the TKD beat out the excitement of piano at dinner as neither had any recollection that they even went! Boys!


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Enough?

He still packs it in, although I still don't know where he puts it. This wasn't even all of it! I need his metabolism.


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Busy, Busy, Busy!

 I'm going to be very bad mommy and post pics of only one kiddo when all three played soccer. The reason being I only had two half decent pics and these were it! Our "Soccer Saturday" started off at 8:15 and ended at 2:30 and crosses three different cities. BUT we somehow managed to do it all together and all in one car. I love it when that happens and were together all day. Of course, soccer also means really tired kids on Saturday nights so that Eric and I get a "date night" (i.e. downstairs in the theater room watching a movie). Win-win all around.  



We had a very busy week that I'm sure will only get busier, but our first week back at school rocked! I'm not really the type of homeschooling mom that has all her ducks in a row before the school year. I buy their text books and I'm good on the academic end of things, but extracurricular seems to be last minute. I can't ever make my mind up what this seasons EC will be. So, I think I'm getting it all nailed down a bit. The boys are starting Tae Kwon Do and piano lessons which means we won't be able to do the Wednesday afternoon children's choir. They'll still be in the children's church choir and drama which practices every week with two plays a year anyway. Ally is starting her painting classes again and rock climbing on Mondays. Of course, soccer practices are going on as well. 


I never thought I'd have the problem in homeschooling with too many activities to choose from. We have a great Christian college near us that offers science classes in their labs taught by their masters students. Unfortunately it's not a time when we can go. But there is just so much out there: the science institute also offers science courses, the Chinese school offers homeschooling classes (albeit at the price of private school), then there's "outdoor school" for those looking to provide survival skills for your children; four to six hour art classes twice a week, homeschool choir and gymnastics classes......... the list goes on and on! I guess that's why it takes me awhile to decide what will work for us and our schedule without overloading. The kids want to try it all! 

Ally had such a great week and ended it with a party Friday afternoon at a friend's house. I'm hoping she still likes it next week!   

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The Kindness of Strangers

Awkward. At least that's what my experience today was initially. You see,  I've certainly had my fair share of experiences asking strangers for help opening things, etc., but I've never asked or had a stranger help me dress. 

Today, however, was a first for me. I was in the ladies locker room after my workout when I was half dressed attempting to put the top of my bathing suit on. I struggled and struggled with the darn thing, but my hands evidently didn't care to show up today. A woman who had just finished dressing and was standing next to me saw my predicament and asked if I could use some help. Considering it was either take the help or walk out without being strapped into the bathing suit, I took her up on it. 

She was so kind though. Considering how awkward the moment could have been, she made me feel less pathetic with her kind comments. She mentioned something about "now that the kids are in school" to which I meekly replied that I homeschool which seems to still conjure up visions of bread making in a demin jumper while instructing multiple unsocialized children (for some people). She immediately asked if I was using Abeka's curriculum and how great homeschooling was. Turns out she was very familiar with the latest homeschooling moms and has created her family through adoption as well (she has teenagers now). 

I pretty thankful that my awkward moment was made not so embarrassing and that my kind stranger made me feel not quite as incompetent today! 

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Ally's First Day.....again


Allygirl headed to her first day of school today. I was nervous hoping we had made the best decision for her, but she was excited.  I got a great big hug and an "I love you, mom!" before I said goodbye to her. She didn't care that she was standing in the middle of the school where everybody was either. 

She came home and excitedly told me all about science experiments and funny teachers. And then, she got to work! I, however, am loving the fact that they have a retired ex cop/swat team member controlling study hall. There shall be no talking! No second chances! Yeah!!! She actually got work done too! Ally is discovering that the more work that is completed on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, the more time she has to spend being "Ally" on Tuesdays and Thursdays. And in typical Allygirl style, she came home with an invite to a party on Friday. She loves going places and doing things; she isn't one to sit still! 

In case you're wondering how I did.... well, I ended up feeling like it was her first day of school all over again. You know, I missed that actually. I was in Kazakhstan when she first attended kindergarten. Looks like it all came back around again. I was a little teary but waited till I got back in the car with my other two squirts. I realized as the day went on though, that it is so much easier teaching two kids instead of three! My brain is only doing two things at once. I'll be glad to have her home tomorrow though! 




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Back At It!



The boys are officially back at school (although reading and math never took a break). We accomplished a lot today. I'm working harder this year to encourage them better and a whole lot more frequently. We all have our goals, right?

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