Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Rest and then (Finally) Productivity!

We had a lovely and refreshing weekend in Ohio.  We left Thursday afternoon, after Bob worked half a day, and we drove straight to my parents' house to drop the girls off for Grandma/Grandpa camp.  To say they were excited would be an immense understatement, and they could not wait until Aunt Claire, Uncle Jim, Emily, and Elia got there on Saturday!  We then drove over to Amy's house, where we spent the rest of the weekend.

It was so wonderful to catch up with her!  Saturday Bob took Micah, Drew, and Verity to a (really, really hot) open house at the local police station, while Amy and I went out for lunch and hit some teacher supply stores.  I finished a book and just generally relaxed, which was so nice.  AMy and Jason even took us to a new (to us) ice cream place Friday night!  I got "chocolate hazelnut", which was a really dark chocolate ice cream, and let me tell you, I highly recommend it!  It was SO good!  Definitely a close favorite with Young's chocolate peanut butter, a flavor which has never really had any competition with me before.

Jonathan had a grand time with Jacob, playing as many different kinds of video games as possible in just a few short days.  Jonathan was the only "big kid" for us, so that was really weird.  Luke was down in Florida for a Civil Air Patrol activity.  He was going to get back Saturday night, but we realized before we left that he hadn't taken a key.  Caleb was still not feeling real well with his really sore throat, and he was also pretty wheezy.  I started wondering if an 8 hour trip and then a weekend in a house with a cat would really be the best thing for him.  Bob agreed, and so we asked him what he thought about it.  He chose to stay home, so we let him--which also did mean he could let Luke in.  Caleb had a restful, quiet time here alone.  He did comment that quiet was nice, but now he could see why people didn't want too much of it, lol.  I left him leftovers, but his throat was so sore, he really hated eating.  He subsisted on a few bowls of oatmeal and a few of chicken noodle soup.  He's (finally!) feeling some slight improvement, but he ended up losing about 11 pounds, which, unlike his mother, he does not have to loose!  So now we will have to work on fattening him back up again.
We said a sad goodbye and drove back home Sunday.  Again, it was SO weird to be driving the big van with just 4 kids!  We listened to Alcatraz and the Evil Librarians, which passed the time quite nicely.

Once we got home, I got to work.  I had a list a mile long of things I hoped to accomplish while the girls were gone.  It doesn't seem like taking away just 3 kids would really make a big difference, but it really does change the dynamics around here!  When the 2 girls were at Camp Caleb, Faith spent most of the week over at the McC's house, and I was able to put together the biology syllabus for this year, and figure out what labs we will be doing.  This is just a regular biology class, using BJU's high school biology book, so it is a class I've never technically taught before.  It's a good, meaty class, but it will certainly be easier for me compared to AP bio.  Yay!

So far this week, I've tweaked the life science syllabus.  We are using a new edition of that book, plus I'm not having a baby.  I've taught that class 3 times for Rivendell, and I've had a baby each time, thus requiring a block of "maternity leave" in the schedule!  It was VERY nice to make the schedule with no maternity leave.  

I also made up my lab list of supplies to order, which is always a big undertaking. I was thrilled to discover that it looks like "Bio Corporation", where I always bought my dissection specimens, has now become "Biology Products", with a similar inventory and prices!  I was worried when I couldn't get Bio Corporation's website to work anymore.  I haven't yet placed my Home Science Tools order, but I should be able to finish that this week too.  I stayed up late Monday night to finish listing out what I needed to order, and I did order the dissection specimens, paying for the order with my Sam's credit card.  When I walked back into the study to turn out the lights, I noticed my credit card sitting there on the desk, and I picked it up to put it back in my wallet.  The only problem was, it never made it there!  Tuesday morning we took Bruno to get his nails trimmed, and when I went to pay, it wasn't in my wallet.  As soon as we got home, I searched around, but it wasn't anywhere on any flat surface in the kitchen or the study.  I was pretty panicked, but the Lord prodded me to go get the bag of kitchen trash out of the big trash dumpster.  I had taken it out there that morning, when I wheeled the dumpster to the curb.  I got it out, went down a few layers, and voila--there was my shiny silver credit card!  I was SO thankful that we took Bruno in.  Otherwise I wouldn't have even realized it was gone before the trash men came to empty our trash!  So that was a big praise, as well as a reminder that I am not really at my best late at night, lol.  The credit card was with some random paper trash and capless markers that I had picked up from the study on my way out to put my credit card away.  It didn't take me very long to get distracted and forget all about the credit card!

I've been working on memory work for this year too.  It's one of my favorite years (okay, I always say that!), with the Preamble to the Constitution, the Star-Spangled Banner, Charge of the Light Brigade, and the Gettysburg Address, among others.   Again, I had to rework it because I had Drew the last time we did this year, so there was a big chunk of time with no memory work scheduled!  I'm not quite done with it, but I've made a good start.

I've also been ordering the books we need for next year.  We are finally at a point in Tapestry of Grace where we have *most* of the books for each year, so ordering for history and lit is not the huge chore it used to be, with 20 million books for both dialectic and rhetoric needing to be ordered and then kept track of.  I'm ordering books for a lot of people, though, and I am always slightly panicked to think that I have overlooked a book (happened before) or (gasp!) an entire class!  Hopefully that won't ever happen!

The last main thing I'm working on is trying to get a little, tiny bit more caught up on the individual scrapbooks I have for the girls. For each of the kids (well, down through Faith, currently . . .) I have an 8x10 scrapbook that has 2 double page spreads for each year besides their first year.  I completely stopped at 2012 (and for Caleb and Jonathan I stopped earlier . . . )  This has really bugged me, so I really wanted to work at least a little bit on these books.  I'm going to try get the 3 girls through 2013--at least that is what I printed off pictures for.  So far I have finished 2012 for Faith.  It's a start, I suppose . . . I don't want to work on it while Verity is up, since I can imagine her contribution to my efforts, and I don't really want Micah and Drew around either.  They would also be thrilled to "help with scissors and markers, and well, I just can't.  Honestly, that's one big reason I haven't worked on this for so long.  I don't really want the girls around either, because I know they too would want to help, and it would just be really stressful to have 3 girls around, and me trying to give them things to do, and  . . . it would just be crazy, and I can't deal with any more crazy in my life right now, especially not in something that should be a relaxing hobby!  Maybe in another 15 years or so I'll get caught up.  Ha!  I am still determined at some point to start books for Micah, Drew, and Verity, but I don't know when that will be.  I like doing it non-digitally because then I can do just a little bit each year, and they each have something where I wrote in my own handwriting for them.  I just think that's neat.  But since I haven't been able to find a good way to scrapbook by myself, alas, it might be awhile.

And now I should get off the computer and start being productive again!

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