Friday, October 29, 2010

I'm Glad That's Over!

I took my 3-hour glucose test this morning. I left the house at 6:30--and got back home after 1:00. A big accident on the Beltway? Something went horridly wrong in the lab? Not at all! Just par for the course!

I arrived at Bethesda at 7:30, where I had to take a number and wait 40 minutes to get my fasting blood drawn. Then (and NNMC is the ONLY lab with this proceedure I have ever gone to), I had to wait until those numbers came back normal before I could drink the glucola and start the 3 hours. So I finally started the test at 9:05, having already been there over an hour and a half.

When I was pregnant with Grace, I also failed my 1 hour one and had to take a 3 hour test. I blogged about my vein worries here, since my right arm had so much vein scarring from my blood clots. But the test went just fine, and so did my 3 hour one with Faith, so I had not even worried a bit about the quality of my veins for this one! I thought those veins had finally repaired themselves or something! Alas, this test did not go so well. I ended up with 7 sticks for 4 draws, and I can tell my arms, especially my right one, are going to be a mass of bruises. I'm not really sure what the problem was since people have been able to draw blood from my right arm these past few years. Not today though. Oh well, they got all the blood they needed, and eventually I was able to leave, LOL.

I did enjoy the nice quiet time, though. I read a book by Adriana Trigliani called Very Valentine. It was not bad--not heavy or anything; just the thing to read when you haven't eaten anything but have swallowed a ton of hummingbird feeder nectar. It was about a girl in NY who was carrying on her grandfather's wedding shoe business (making these special shoes by hand). I really am NOT into shoes in any way, shape, or form, so I couldn't really relate, but the author's descriptions were good.

So now I wait for the results. I remember with Faith the doctor didn't call until over a week later--giving me hope that I had passed. I know now not to get my hopes up! I do have an appointment the day before Thanksgiving, so I will know for sure by then, I guess.

In other somewhat related news, I was finally able to schedule an ultrasound for Dec. 3. I'll be almost 22 weeks, and I don't like to have them that late, but oh well. I had called the radiology number on Monday, and I left a message, just like they instructed--name, sponsor's social, good number to reach you, etc. They said they would call back within 48 hours, but that simply did not happen. So I called again Thursday, getting the same message. I eventually just starting calling them every time I thought of it, and FINALLY I got through to a real person who deigned to talk to me, LOL. She said November was all full, and the December schedule wasn't out yet, but she would "reserve" a spot for me Dec. 3 at 10:00. We'll see how that all works out. I'm not really all that trusting of their ability to keep their word!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Today . . .

. . . I called off school.

The day was not a total waste, academically. Nathan of course still did all the stuff he had to do. And the rest of us headed to our old Classical Conversations group so I could lead a starfish dissection. I had gotten a starfish from the lady who ordered them yesterday, so I was able to dissect one myself last night, to use as an example. I also realized that you really needed a good, sharp scalpel to be able to cut the skin of those suckers, and the scissors the kids were going to have simply wouldn't cut it! So we went early so I could make slices with my scalpel in all the starfish. They were still hard to open, but thankfully CC has lots of parents around to help. The kids seemed to enjoy it! It's fun for me too. I actually feel like I am using my degree when I do things like that!

In the afternoon, since we weren't trying to finish school, I did a pregnancy pilates video. This was because I had only walked 20 minutes on the treadmill this morning, and I've upped my exercise to 45 minutes a day. Once I am officially diagnosed, I'll have to up it again to at least 1 hour a day. Not looking forward to fitting that in to a normal day!

After I finished, Anna and Grace wanted to watch our old "Riverdance" video. Anna has really been fascinated with dance lately. She has been interested in ballet, but also in Irish dancing, because Jessica L. has been doing it for several years now and is a willing demonstrator on Friday nights! Anna dresses up in an old black leotard (from Rose's girls!) and her black church shoes (which do have a little heel), and she kicks and dances around the house. So cute! So I knew they would get a kick out of Riverdance. They were both quite enthralled! It brought back wonderful memories for me of . . . hmmm . . . one of our anniversaries in Colorado, when Bob got us tickets to watch Riverdance downtown. I LOVED it! That was such a fun night! So if Anna does decide to take up Irish dancing, I will be a willing spectator! [Okay, I have devoted more thought to the date question, because that was really bugging me. We were in our USAFA house, so I am pretty sure it was July 2000, so that would have been our 7th anniversary. Ta da!]

I was also able to make banana bread out of the overripe, brown, oozy bananas that have been sitting on our counter, waiting for me to have time and energy to do something about them. I used Splenda and whole wheat flour--might as well get back in the habit!

I also uploaded pictures onto Snapfish, something I apparently hadn't done since the middle of August. It actually didn't take that much time, because, as it turns out, I have hardly taken any pictures these past 2 months! I need to get on the stick! I guess we just haven't done anything fascinating, and no one has had a birthday. Caleb's birthday is coming up next Friday, though, so we should get some pictures from that! He still hasn't given me a definitive answer on what he wants for a cake. That worries me, LOL. I am taking suggestions!

So see, we didn't do school, but I got a lot of other stuff done. Of course, I have tons of laundry that needs to be folded, and more laundry that needs to be washed. I also need to mop. We are struggling with ants in our kitchen--and why wouldn't we be?! With all the crumbs and spills on our floor, it must seem like the Big Rock Candy Mountain to them! They probably come from miles away! We're famous! Never the less, we are continuing the good fight. Maybe in 16 years or so, when everyone still at home is bigger, we'll make some headway. In the meantime . . . school is on for tomorrow!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Whew, What a Week!

I'm glad it's over. Hopefully next week will be more restful!

1. We're not out of the woods with Grace yet. She did really well on Thursday and Friday. She ate and drank normally, and she also played and generally acted totally normally. No stomach pains or anything. But early this morning, around 5:00, she woke up crying. She ended up vomiting a total of 4 times in one hour, each time nothing more than stomach acid. She just kept clutching up under her ribcage, making me again wonder about a reflux-type thing going on. So if she keeps doing that, I guess I'll try to take her in again on Monday. She seemed fine today, although tired and a bit crabby. She didn't eat much in the morning, but by the afternoon, she was fine.

2. Today was Nathan's last regular season football game. They lost, but his team won 3 games this year. One of his coaches told them that was a record for an expansion team in their league! Last year's expansion team didn't win any games last year--or this year. That would really stink. Earlier in the season we had been wondering why the league even decided to have another expansion team this year. It seemed like a boy from Nathan's team could have gone to each of the other teams. We have decided that the league, when they realized Gary was wanting to coach again, thought that they should do an expansion team this year with him coaching it, in hopes that in a few years the team would be a successful part of the league, as opposed to a perpetual bottom-dweller. I think Nathan has learned so much about foootball this year. And I know he would not have played anywhere near aas much as he did if he had been on an established team, where most people had played plenty of organized football before. It's definitely been a good experience for him. I, however, am not sorry to see the season end. It definitely takes up a lot of time! They will still have at least one playoff game.

3. Tonight we went over to the McC's house for chili, along with the other 2 families in our jr. high Rivendell co-op. The kids all watched the first half of The 10 Comandments, to celebrate our finishing Unit 1 of Tapestry of Grace. We adults made so much noise talking and laughing in the dining room that the kids had to come in and tell up to keep quiet! It was a fun evening! We are so blessed to have these families for friends. Developing good friendships, the iron-sharpening-iron type, especially for our boys, was a big goal for our co-op, and I would definitely say we are succeeding, praise the Lord. The boys all played football out front before eating, and I am sure it was a bit shocking for the neighbors to look out and see the 11 boys from our combined families all out there running around!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Grumpy Grace's Big Day

I realized this afternoon that I had my camera in my diaper bag, since I keep meaning to take pictures at football games, Rivendell, etc. Instead, I was able to capture for posterity my charming, sweet, and cooperative Grace! Ha!

Let me back up a bit. Grace was still vomiting off and on through the weekend. Saturday was an especially bad day. She just laid around, moaning and groaning, most of the day. Eventually she ate some small bit of something (a few bites of toast, maybe?), felt better and went outside to play for a bit. We had pancakes for dinner, since we were heading off to Nathan's game and were short on time. She ate 2 of those, but started complaining about her tummy immediately after. She did throw up all of dinner, she felt better, and we headed off to the game (which Nathan's team won. Yay!). She complained of being hungry throughout the game, however, so I finally said she could have applesauce when we got back home. That came back up around 1:30.

Sunday morning she felt bad and ate hardly anything, but I was able to distract her with picking out a church dress and tights, and we went to church. She seemed like she was doing better Sunday. She even kept down a tiny bit of beef barley soup that evening. She slept through the night without waking (due, I am sure, to all your prayers!! Thank you!), and so I decided not to take her in Monday after all.

That was not the right decision, as it turned out. She did not throw up Monday, but that was because she pretty much ate nothing. Tuesday morning she woke up thirsty, drank some water, and threw that back up 30 minutes later. She didn't eat anything more, and she was definitely not herself the rest of the day. She just laid around, groaning, and complaining that her back was hurting. Because I was teaching at the co-op, I could not take her in, and so she went to Christine's for the morning, and just laid around the church in the afternoon. She ate a little bit of oatmeal when we got home, and that came back up at 10:30. She did sleep the rest of the night, but I got up at 6:15 to call and make an appointment for her today.

We left for Bethesda at 9:25 for our 10:20 appointment. The doctor didn't find anything really wrong, but she ordered some bloodwork and IV fluids, since Grace was dehydrated. The doctor said that they had been seeing quite a few families where a few people got sick with a bug, but one child just couldn't shake it. The stomach got irritated from the vomiting, which led to more vomiting, and eventually dehydration. She said the pain was so bad for some kids, they were working them up to check for appendicitis. That actually happened to us with Luke when he was maybe 3, although his "sickness' turned out to be an impacted bowel. Thankfully, that was not the case here, as that episode is not really my favorite memory with Luke, LOL. Quite tramatic!

Speaking of tramatic, it took 2 attempts to get the IV in Grace, and she was not a real happy camper about that, as you can see in the top picture. I took a picture of all the tubes so we could show the boys, especially Caleb. I am sure he would have jumped through the roof if this had been attempted on him! Maybe the dehydration took the edge off Grace, but at least she didn't struggle or cry too terribly much, LOL. I told her that Mommy always got IVs when I had babies, so she could tell Anna she was being like Mommy, but amazingly, that didn't go over well. LOL! She did get an Ariel sticker.

She also got a chewable anti-nausea pill. She chewed it up and took a sip of water, but then she decided that it tasted so bad that she didn't want to swallow it. So she held it in her mouth for over 45 minutes! Stubborn girl. Finally I resorted to forcing her head back and her mouth open several times, which made her swallow most of it. Good grief. I felt like Dr. Herriot or something, with a recalcitrant dog!

And finally you can see the difference that one bolus of fluid made in her disposition. Before the second bag was started, we tried getting a urine sample from her. We had already tried, before any of the IV fluid, but that was not a success at all. The second attempt was not either. Sigh. So we headed back in for more fluid. After that was done, we tried again in the bathroom--for 45 minutes. Grrrrrrrr. I was not a happy camper myself at that point, since it was already close to 3:30, and I knew we would be facing serious traffic. Plus, all I had eaten since we got there was a small bag of trail mix and a granola bar, which I happened to have in the diaper bag. I was SO hungry!! Eventually the doctor knocked on the bathroom door, and we went back to the treatment room. She said all Grace's labs had come back perfectly normal (except her glucose level was low, wonder why?!), so it was highly unlikely that she had a urinary tract infection. So she let us go without getting a sample, thankfully. I was about on my last legs, and so was Grace.
Of course, I was worried that she would have a terrible accident on the way home, with all that fluid, but not to worry. She fell asleep and had a nice nap, but she didn't pee. She didn't even go right after we got home. Maybe an hour later she finally went. I guess she really was dehyrated!
So that was my very long day. My wonderful friend Christine called me at the hospital and told me she was bringing a meal for us for dinner. What a tremendous blessing!! I inhaled that, then drove Nathan off to his football game (which they also won--yay again!). And now I'm eating ice cream. Oh, I've decided I'm not doing the glucose test until next Friday, LOL.
I do want to mention how wonderful the boys were today. I was gone pretty much the entire day, but Nathan and Luke kept everything running. They changed poopy Faith and put her down for her nap, they got lunch, they made sure everyone did school and chores . . . I am so thankful for such responsible and helpful boys. I could not have taken everyone with me--there simply wasn't room where we spent the day. What a relief to be able to leave everyone here and know they were being well taken care of!

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Prayer Request

I am planning on taking my 3 hour glucose test next Friday. I actually have to call the lab and schedule it, so hopefully that will work. I am not planning on taking it any earlier, LOL. One reason is that I am not sleeping well at night because people keep waking me up. I know from the last time I had ges. diabetes that not getting a full night's sleep really wreaks havoc with my glucose readings, no matter what I eat or how much I exercise. When kids were sick and I was getting up during the night with them, I could eat turkey breast and salad all day, but still have high readings.

But I have only had one full night's sleep since 2 Sundays ago. Grace has been the culprit most times, including 3 times last night (once at 2:00 because she needed to pee and couldn't get her arms back in her sleeper, another at 4:30 where she did her little cry loudly, cough hard, and throw up trick for the first time in 3 nights, and another time at 6:00 because she had a bad dream and was thirsty). There have been a few other random accidents and other disruptions, however, and it is making for a tired and crabby mom. I am sure I will have absolutely no chance of passing a 3 hour test if I can't have a few good nights of sleep.

So that's my prayer request--that somehow people will stop waking me up! What in the world?! They are all normally such good sleepers, and I don't know why they are choosing now to have problems! It feels like an attack, and I am trying not to take it personally, LOL. I guess I will call Monday to try to schedule the test on Friday if the weekend has gone okay as far as sleeping. And if next week is bad, then I will just try to move the test to the following week. Surely this phase will pass soon. I'm praying that, anyway.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Some Updates

Let me start with the good news: no one woke me up last night. Well, that's not 100% accurate--Faith did cry out some time in the middle of the night, but she stopped right away and went back to sleep, as did I. It wasn't until she woke up in the morning, and I went in to get her, that I realized she had thrown up some time in the night. Her bed was a mess, and I put her straight into the bath tub. Nothing like dealing with vomit first-thing in the morning! She also has diarrhea, which she's been struggling with for the last 2 or 3 days (she is teething her eye teeth), so she has a rash. She has not been a happy camper today.

Grace did not wake up last night, but she is still not feeling the best. She fussed around this afternoon, and finally I told her to just go lie down in her bed. She fussed there for awhile, but eventually fell asleep. Yay! Now Faith is down too, and the house is nice and quiet.

I left all this chaos and sickness behind this morning in Nathan and Luke's capable hands, and I waltzed off to Bethesda for my OB appointment. They did a fine job, although Luke did have to change a poopy diaper, and Faith pitched such a fit he couldn't get her pants back on her! He had to settle her down with some apple juice, a special treat.

At my OB appointment I found out that I did not pass my 1 hour glucose tolerance test. I was 2 points too high, so I have to take the 3 hour one in the next week or 2. I do not have high hopes for passing this one either, unfortunately, and the thought of 25 weeks of poking my fingers and exercising an hour each day is quite depressing right now.

The baby seems to be doing just fine, however. S/he was very active, moving around so much it was hard to get a good reading of the heartrate. It was about 144, which is low--maybe it is a boy after all? I knew I had been feeling a lot of movement lately!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

What's New?

(Besides a job, I mean . . .)

1. Grace has some sort of wierd tummy thing going on. She woke up last Monday night starting at 4:00 and vomited 4 times. It was like her food from dinner had never digested one bit! Since then, she has woken up almost every night, usually somewhere between 4:00 and 6:30, and heaved up a bit of stomach acid. This is very disturbing, not only for me, LOL, but also Anna, who sleeps with her. So both girls have been very crabby this week. Grace had been just fine during the day, but today she moped around and hardly ate anything. She is one of my "5th percentile" kids, so we certainly don't want her losing any weight! My mom suggested possibly reflux of something. If she keeps on with this pattern, I'll try to get an appointment maybe on Thursday.

2. I can't take her in tomorrow because I have my second OB appointment. I took a 1-hour glucose tolerance test last Thursday, so I am assuming I'll get the results of that. We'll see if all my exercise is paying off so far. I also need to call to schedule my 20 week ultrasound. Wow! Time is flying! I'm only 14 weeks, but I definitely (as always) look bigger than that. That's why I no longer take belly shots until I'm maybe 30 weeks along, LOL. Then I finally look the right size for how far along I am! I'm feeling lots of little flutters and kicks now.

3. I had a big day on Saturday--I drove down to Richmond for my niece Christi's baby shower! Bob's sister Ann did such a nice job with the food and all the other details. There was an excellent turnout too--around 40 people! Christi got a ton of lovely and practical gifts, including lots of diapers and wipes! It was fun, and I was so glad I was able to go.

4. Our church picnic was Sunday after our morning service. The weather was absolutely perfect! We ate tons of food and visited for a long time. We got there around 1:30, and we didn't leave until 6:00! Bob actually stayed later and played some soccer and football. I had whiney dirty kids in my car, LOL. I was glad we didn't take baths and showers Saturday night, as we usually do. They all needed something when we got home! Craig McC had taken Caleb, Jonathan, and some of his boys down to the Potomac for awhile, where they had an absolute ball catching tadpoles, clams, and a dead crayfish. They wanted to take the tadpoles home for pets and dissect the crayfish! I was so tired by this time--the last thing I wanted to deal with was how to get tadpoles and a dead crayfish home, mush less actually dealing with them AT home, LOL! I already had several leaf-laden twigs for my science lesson today that had fallen around the playground in my hands--and those were much less messy. Ha! We finally made it home, sans animal life, where I collapsed. But it was so wonderful to get all that visiting in!

5. Another successful week of our Rivendell junior high co-op is in the books! The moss I collected a week and a half ago did manage to survive in the tub on our counter, and after our class today, I planted it in our front area. We'll see if it takes. I love moss! The focus of the week was plants, and so we did alot with leaf characteristics. Brought me right back to botany class! I searched around our yard and the walking path through the woods behind our neighborhood to find all sorts of samples of various leaf possibilities--simple, compound, oppposite, alternate, pinnately compound, palmately compound. I am happy to say I found representatives of all, even a horsechestnut for the palmately compound! I knew that would be the hardest! Fall is the perfect time to look for leaves, since so many are already on the ground. I switched the order we are covering several of the chapters in the book, and I was so glad I did. I think in another week or two it would have been to hard to find good leaf specimens.

As part of the memory work time today with the younger kids, we made salt maps of Israel, to help them get a good idea of the topography of some of the places we've been learning about in our mapwork. The kids all really enjoyed it. We mainly focused on the Coastal Plain, Central Mountains, Jordan River Valley, and the Valley of Jezreel. I stayed up way to late last night making 5 batches of salt dough, LOL.

So now you know what I've been up to, and why I've been too busy to blog! I have really been tired in the evenings, especially since certain parties ("Grace") keep interrupting my sleep. I am definitely one who notices when I don't get several hours of unbroken sleep each night. I am starting several canker sores in my mouth, which is always my first sign that my body is running down. So with that, I am heading off to bed! Hopefully I'll blog again before this time next week!

Jehovah Jireh

"And my God shall meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4: 19

So Bob retired from active duty on 1 August, and he was already engaged in job-hunting at that time. He learned quite a bit about resume-formatting and searching for jobs on the internet! Finally just a week or two ago, things started to come together. He received an offer from one company, for a job down at the Pentagon. He decided not to take this offer because 2 other jobs looked very promising. One had given him a contingent offer, and another one had told him twice on the phone to expect an offer. Unexpectedly the first compnay came back last week, after telling Bob they were moving on if he didn't sign their offer, and they increased their offer! After we talked about it for awhile Thursday night, Bob felt like the Lord was leading him to take that offer. So he faxed in the paperwork Friday morning--about 30 minutes before the contigent offer company emailed to say someone thought they needed a guy with more hands-on experience with some program, so that didn't think Bob was the right guy after all! And we never did get the offer from that 3rd company. It could come sometime, sure, but I don't think either of us would really have any confidence in the company or their word at that point! This first company really wanted Bob, and they wanted him to start work today. It seems like this is the job God has provided for right now.

Bob did have an interesting point to make about the job search last week. He told me he had been approaching it with sort of a "marriage model" mindset, but really that wasn't the case. He doesn't need to find the one true perfect job that he can commit to for the rest of his working life (or even 23 years, which is how long he served on active duty!). But he does need a job right now, and this job seems like a good fit. He liked the people with whom he'll be working. The one big drawback is the commute. Today was his first day (just inprocessing stuff right now), and it took him a long time to get down there. He's still working on the best route to take and time to go in (early!). So we'll see how it goes, and we are very thankful to the Lord for providing a job in this uncertain economy!

This time without a job has helped both of us reflect on how it really is the Lord who provides for our needs. I know for me it has always just been the thought of "the Air Force" as the one supplying us. Taking that away, with nothing in its place for a few months really helped me see the hand of the Lord in our lives, and he takes care of the family he has given us.

We really cut back spending, starting in July to just bare neccessities. That is always a good thing to do! We even started doing things like make our own pizza, which was fun and something we will definitely continue doing. But even in little things, God was providing things for us. For example, as a sort of frivolous thing, we had already signed Nathan up for football several months before Bob retired, not having any idea of how long it would take to find a job. In July we realized he would need some Underarmour type shirts to go under his pads. When we visited my parents in Ohio, we found a long-sleeved one and a short-sleeved one at Once Upon a Child for just a few dollars each! What a savings! And when I went to see what sort of fall/winter clothes I had for Anna in the tub of clothes that various people had given us, I realized we don't need one. single. thing for her this winter. We have everything we need from all our friends' generosity! And Nathan hasn't grown a ton, so he should be okay too. First boy and first girl--that's really all I need to worry about, clothing-wise, LOL. Everyone else gets hand-me-downs. But our neighbors down the street, after their garage sale a few weeks ago, gave us all their boy clothes that didn't sell--a whole bunch of shirts that fit Caleb and Jonathan. So now I can be done with any shirts from Nathan and Luke that are just too ratty! How exciting!

It also has been a refreshing time to have Bob not work. He and I have gone on walks many mornings after the kids got started with their school. We would often run errands together--cheap date! He was able to take some of the kids riding on the bike path sometimes, which was a special treat. And he got a lot of things taken care of around the house. Which brings me to another thing the Lord provided--that 40 foot ladder we found by the curb, waiting for the trashman back in July. We have certainly gotten a lot of use out of that, as Bob has repaired a lot of trim, and unfortunately has a lot more to do. (And by "we", I mean "Bob", since I have only set foot on the bottom rung of the thing to steady it, LOL.)

I know a lot of you have been praying for Bob's job search, and we are so thankful for your prayers. We don't take this job for granted. We have friends who have been out of work for a year or so. It's sobering to even think about. Hopefully Bob will be a blessing in this new job, and we are thankful to the Lord for providing for us in this way.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

And Now, a Few Random Pictures

I finally got around to uploading pictures off the camera this afternoon . . . let's see what we have . . .
Well, what do we have here? A picture to trot out for the high school boyfriends, I'm thinking! These are self-described "cowboy princesses". They are indeed wearing cowboy boots and riding stick horses in their princess dress-up gowns. The girls in the middle is Kenna, Beverly's daughter (they were the company we had last weekend). She's the same age as Grace. They were all so cute, dressing up and playing together!

Here they are in a more natural state. Kenna has very short hair, due to her giving herself a haricut one night after her brothers had gotten cuts. But she looked so cute with short hair, and she really fit in with our girls! At church everyone commented on how she looked like she was related!
Moving on to more recent pictures, these are 2 roses from our rose bush. Bob planted the bush earlier this summer to hopefully eventually hide our air conditioner units outside. So far it has produced several very beautiful roses! Nathan brought these buds in yesterday, and they really opened up and looked lovely on the island today for our church small group meeting! Anna loves that they are pink, which of course is exactly why Bob picked that particular plant!

This is the other lovely "arrangement" we have gracing our counter. We went on a little nature walk down the path behind our neighborhood Friday so I could search for some things I needed for science this week. I needed to get some pond water, since we hoping to look at algae and protozoa this Tuesday. We have more of a creek, but there was a pool of standing water off to the side, so I scooped up some of that and am hoping for the best. I'll get out the microscope tomorrow to see what there is to see. I put some grains of brown rice in one small tub of it, to hopefully encourage more protozoa growth, and a few drops of plant food (in complete sun, although it's been rainy lately) to hopefully encourage algae growth. I know I can use water from our rain barrel, which does have some algae, if the one doesn't work, but I didn't see very many protozoa in the rain water last time I looked.

As I was scooping out the water while on a little concrete bridge, I was noticing how terribly smelly it was down by the water. I assumed it was the standing water, so I tried to be done as quickly as possible. Anna had been going back and forth across the bridge, and as she came back over, she sort of stumbled over this big pile of leaves and sticks which had washed onto the bridge with all the torrential rains we had last week. As I helped her up, I all of a sudden noticed TEETH in the pile of leaves! Ack! There was a dead weasel staring at me! It gave me quite a shock! No wonder it smelled so bad, LOL. And it is only going to get worse, as it didn't appear too badly decomposed yet. We won't be getting anything more from that creek anytime soon.

The other thing I collected was moss, and it wasn't until I got back home, proudly displaying my find, that I realized we actually are studying moss NEXT Tuesday. So now I am trying to keep the moss alive in the tupperware tub of water until then. They were some great samples, with visible spore-producing stalks and everything! I hope they make it . . .

The last thing in my tub are some mushroom samples. I need to do 2 spore prints, which I am hoping to do tomorrow. On our walks, we've been scouting the neighborhood for fresh mushrooms so I can have each boy dissect one Tuesday. Fortuitously, this has been a very rainy week, so there are mushrooms popping up all around us! I think I should have plenty of samples to choose from! The mushrooms in my tub are not really doing so well, actually, so I might just go get 2 more fresh ones tomorrow morning for the spore prints. I guess they don't grow well hydroponically, LOL. I actually can't stand eating mushrooms, so I have never paid much attention to them and their likes and dislikes whatsoever, to be honest! I won't be starting a mushroom farm, that's for sure.

So that's a small sample of what was on our camera memory card. Actually, that was really about all. We haven't been taking too many pictures lately!