Saturday, September 19, 2009

Pre Admission to Harvard may not be necessary

The new school began about a month ago and the newness has officially worn off and has been replaced with complacency. I may have more than I bargained for teaching a kindergartner, preschooler and herding around a ten month old who just started walking and who likes to eat erasures.

Early in the month I self diagnosed Rooster with ADHD because he can't sit still, he has the attention span of a hummingbird and he can't retain information longer than a nano second. While ADD and ADHD run rampant in my family, I know now that his symptoms could also be diagnosed as a five year old boy. I've taken the option of being in denial as so as a preventative to hyper behavior I make sure he has a good breakfast, his lessons are short and that he gets plenty of outdoor time. It seems to have helped. At this point I'm the only taking tranquilizers.

Pigeon loves school, but refuses to admit she's in preschool. She wants to learn the same thing her big brother learns, which is fine but she hasn't mastered basic skills like holding a pencil, cutting with scissors and she is not able to even sit up straight in a chair. For some reason chairs are one big boobie trap for Pigeon.

The Punkin is ten months old now loves to sit on the floor and yell at the kids as they do their work. When she's not belting out high pitched squeals, she's gumming the table, ripping up paper, and as I mentioned before - she's eating erasures. I intermittently put her in the playpen for some individual play time but she doesn't like this so much and instead of squealing on the floor in the classroom she screams at the top of her lungs from the living room.

I'm told by other homeschool moms that it will get easier. A friend of mine has taught eight of her children and judging by her Facebook pictures she's not old before her time. Now she might be crazy and I wouldn't know it.

I try to remember that I really am giving them a good education. As I watch their eyes glaze over during a Shakespeare lesson or poetry reading or while they listen to Handel I try to remember that they're getting more of this now than they would in 12 years in our local school system. They're studying a foreign language, doing great at math and learning to read and they get to spend a tremendous amount of time studying nature. Now if I can just keep from turning into a grouchy old hag that would be great.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Summer is gone

Summer is all but gone and yet it doesn't seem like it was ever really here. The temperatures were mild, but unfortunately we never got the outpouring of rain we usually get in July and August, which will make for a very long winter.

Time has flown by since Annaliese was born last November. I scarcely remember the holidays or Campbell and Madi Ryan's birthdays. I worked most of the spring trying to plant a garden in solid caliche. My poor husband drove steel posts for me through rock and caliche for the garden fence and brought tractor loads of dirt in from a dirt tank. I planted for weeks and watered incessantly because it never rained. By the beginning of August I was pulling up beans that never grew, corn with ear worms, squash and bell peppers that never bloomed and eggplants that never grew. All of my tomatoes got bloom end rot. The only vestige of my garden that did well was lettuce. My hopes of storing up vegetables for the winter and making extra money at the farm stands are shot.

My original intentions were to have an organic garden. That idea was nixed when the dinosaur grasshoppers started showing up and then pretty soon my garden was like Costa Rica for grasshoppers. We had giant black and gold ones, red wings, bright green ones, camo colored ones, and giant spindly legged ones and they were everywhere. And you had to have a hunting license to kill some of these bad boys. You couldn't just kill them, you had to immobilize them first and then go on in for the death blow because they were so fast. It was a constant battle and unfortunately, they won.

What vegetables I did manage to harvest, I canned. This was not even remotely as glamorous as I thought it would be. In the end, I was quoting my friends reactions, "I could buy this at the store. Who cares if it has preservatives and is canned in unsafe plants and has a ton of sodium in it. This is nuts.' But I know that when January comes I can open my cupboard and pull out a jar of fresh tasting tomatoes and it will be heaven and I will have thought that all this hard work was worth it. Or maybe not. By next spring, all of the frustrations will be forgotten and I will be again lusting over my Burpee garden, planning the rows and beds and dreaming of farm stands and even canning. Because I have something to prove dang it.