Sunday, October 30, 2011

Too busy?

Quick run-down of the week:  I did waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much this week.   Besides home schooling which should be enough for anyone, it was just one of those weeks where everything culminates at the same time.  Attending a baptism, preparing music and delivering it to everyone in the music group so they'd have time to practice before practice and trying to find more people to join to fill in some empty spots, carving pumpkins for family night, working on a song and teaching it to the young women, writing a skit for the young women to perform in an upcoming event that is way too close, fixing a leaking pipe, getting an oil change and finding out after that that I have an oil leak and have to take the car in tomorrow, having my battery die and figuring out how to jump a car with only me and the piano teacher, having piano lessons, quitting piano lessons for the holiday season, organizing and buying clothes that match or somewhat go together for family pictures, ironing and washing all those clothes for 6 people, taking family pictures twice, having pack night, going visiting teaching to two homes with my kids and their school work, quitting speech therapy because we can't afford it anymore, taking a thank you card to the speech therapist, going on a field trip with home schoolers to a grocery store, getting snacks for three soccer parties on Saturday one of which we are in charge of since Pat's the coach, doing yard work, running, and then finally today going to church for 4 hours since we had choir practice after church.  Oh yeah, and the usual making meals, housecleaning, diaper changing, story reading, grocery shopping fun we normally have.

My weeks are always busy, but this one was over the top with soccer ending, Halloween, and family pictures.  I don't like being under this much stress because I couldn't focus on my kids and I lost my temper a lot.   (Like when we were already late for soccer and Evan still couldn't find his shoes, so we tore apart the house even more, and I'm shrieking if anyone would ever put anything away then we might be able to find something, and eventually we gave up and grabbed some shoes out of the back yard that had been on the grass for at least 6 months and Pat had to clean the spiders out of them before E could wear them.)

I felt so bad about losing my temper.  I seem to be learning more patience as the years go by, but sometimes I just freak out.  I hope to be able to just say no someday when it's appropriate and not feel guilty.  I just read a great article pertaining to home schoolers and how they need to not answer the phone during the school time, or the door, and need to not let their church obligations keep them too busy to do their work well.  I think that could apply to any family, when it's involving time with their kids.  While I love serving in the church and community, if your own family is falling apart, or coming in second place, I don't think that's okay.  And a lot of the stuff I do, I fully take on myself so it's my fault.  I get an idea, and once I start it, I feel like I have to see it through.  So all I can do is pray that God will help me to see what is wise and best so that I do things with better judgement and prudence in the future.  To my children who will read this one day in the future- you guys are the best and I'm sorry I yelled at you!  I love you so much. 
The two small pumpkins are from our garden.  We carved pumpkins and then roasted the seeds with salt.  So good. 
We had our first snow of the year.  Dallas showing his frozen shirt he left outside. It's tied to a pole because it's the flag for his fort.

We had a fun trunk or treat at the church.   Wish you could see the feather on the back of Ln's head band.  She is too cute!

We took family pictures this week.  Twice.  I won't see how they turned out though for a couple weeks.  One was just $10 for a fundraiser-5 minute family picture and done- they'll mail it in two weeks.  The other my friend did for free, but I have to do some service to pay for them.  So she serves us if we'll serve others and write on her blog about what we did.  I'm doing my music group, and Pat's doing something else.
Saturday wrapped up the end of the boys soccer season, and we had three parties (one after each game was over).  We had lots of fun and the boys all really improved a lot.  It's difficult having three games every Saturday, and practices every week, but now that it's all done, it's going to feel a bit empty.  Dallas and Sam especially had good friends and soccer gave them the opportunity to see them consistently and play with them which they don't normally get to do since we home school.  We've come to know a lot of the families out there and it's nice to see them season after season.  It was funny because on D's team, 5 of the 9 boys were home schooled, and none of those were in our home school group.  Some are new friends and some we've seen for 3-4 years now.  I just thought that was cool. 
By the way, I didn't mean to make it sound like I was complaining about serving.  I enjoy it and I'm really grateful for the church programs since while I am helping in one place others are helping my children.  I am really blessed to have such wonderful scout leaders who watch over Dallas and run such a fun program for him.   He and Sam both love going to the church each week to do scouts and then they all play with their friends afterwards in the gym, while I'm finishing up with the young women.  And hopefully the mothers of the young women feel like we do a good job with them!

Now if you'll excuse me, it's 11:15pm and I have to go work on the skit and correct a weeks worth of work. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

I hate coming up with a title for each journal entry.

The best babysitter in the world came over this weekend.  She doesn't charge a thing, and lets us go out for 8 hours at a time. (Longer if we want to.)  The kids love her since she cooks, plays games, reads books and lets them watch movies.  She even finished up the school work with them!  This babysitter goes by the name of Stephanie, and looks very much like my sister.  But she also went by the name Aunt Stephanie the next day when we watched the boys soccer games.  She even cheered and took pictures like a real Aunt.

Unfortunately, she left as quick as she came.  Sad, I know.

I think I may be heading toward a mid-life crisis.  Sometimes I stay up really late and dance my brains out.  This seems to be happening more frequently.  I get to go to a church dance this weekend.  My high school friend Ruby and I used to go to those all the time and dance like crazy, so I keep feeling excited, but I have to remind myself that I am going this time as an adult chaperone, and I won't be dancing.  Yep, I'm pretty sure I'm not allowed to dance and I cannot pass for a high-schooler.  No one wants to see me dance anyway, but... you can bet I'll be tapping my toes really hard.  Do you think they're still playing Jump Jump, and Cotton Eye'd Joe?  I hope not.

Today I went to see a surgeon because whenever I bend over too long my organs fall out.  At least that's what it was feeling like.  Then it makes you feel crazy panicked like you might not get it all back together and after some wiggling it all finally goes back in, and you're relieved.  But it hurts for a week after that.  So a friend said I should really get that checked out since it's been happening for 2 years or so.

The surgeon said I don't need surgery because it's actually my ribs sliding out of joint.  The perscription?  Wear a corset!  He called it a rib belt I think, and I said, "Like a corset?"  and he said, "Yes."
He said it's from all that babies kicking way up high in my ribs.  (I'll get them for that.)

Beautiful double rainbow.  I have an awful camera, but if was a full bow.  And you can see my sunflowers!

Couldn't quite get the full bow in the picture, but it was stunning.

Trip to the pumpkin patch with our home school group.  We went to McCalls this year which is right by our house, but it's the first time I've been there.  It was pretty awesome.

They have a huge corn maze, but we just went to the first lookout and back.

Fast slides!


Finished correcting a big stack of work!  Homeschooling is a full time job.  This is my least favorite part. They just finished the first of 5 units.  Sam's overall grade is and A.  Dallas' math is an A and his English is B-. 

 We were glad to have Hasslers and Colsons to dinner this week.  We have people to dinner about once a month, even if it is just the missionaries, and I realized that I never wrote about that, but since I don't want to talk about people on my blog who may not appreciate it, I'll just say that I just found out that someone is from Sacramento and played water polo just like me in high school.  That is sooooooooo weird.

A couple days ago Sam got something stuck in his eye and the doctor was able to get it out and he was more brave than I would have been.  Dallas has an appointment for braces this week.  Hopefully they'll say he doesn't need them for a couple more years.

We've been getting into the fun of Halloween around here.  We actually grew two pumpkins this year, and the boys have each made a skeleton, spiderwebs, and helped me decorate.  We've also learned some fingerplay Halloween songs that Ln LOVES (5 little pumpkins sitting on a gate, and I'm stirring and stirring my brew).  I found a dragon costume at the thrift store for Evan, but I still don't know what to do for Sam and Dallas.  They want to be wizards with a white cloak and a dark cloak and they even found staff's in the back yard (sticks that we can spray paint).   Someone gave us an Indian costume for Ln so she's good.  Pat and I are dressing up as really cool people.   Go watch Adam Sandler's SNL skit for cheap Halloween costume ideas.   Very helpful.  Good day.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

10 Commandment Rock

"In the middle of the lonely desert, rests a long forgotten stone deep in the heart of the New Mexico. The language, written in anicent Palo Hebrew, records the very words of the Ten Commandments. To date no one knows how long this stone has been there, or how it got there. Yet over the years, this stone has been visited by over 75 different Bible Scholars. All Bible Scholars have concluded that this stone is not a fake, but indeed real and authentic." Underwood, L. Lyle

Last week we went on a field trip with our home school group out to Indian lands to see this large boulder weighing about 80 tons.   Some believe that it was college students who came here and copied the inscription from a book, but I find that doubtful personally because it's in the middle of nowhere and would have taken so much work to do that.  But who knows.  That's why it's called a mystery rock.  Some firmly believe it is 4000 years old, others 2,500-2000 years old.  Since there's no fee to go see it, and it cannot be moved to a museum, people have been visiting it, some destroying it, some to clean it, so apparently it cannot be tested with accuracy.

"A letter group resembling the tetragrammation YHWH, or "Yahweh," makes four appearances. The stone is controversial in that some claim the inscription is Pre-Columbian, and therefore proof of early Semitic contact with the Americas. The first recorded mention of the stone is in 1933, when professor Frank Hibben, an archaeologist from the UNM, saw it. Hibben was led to the stone by an unnamed guide who claimed to have found it as a boy in the 1880s. The 1880s date of discovery is important to those who believe that the stone was inscribed by a lost tribe of Israel. The Paleo-Hebrew script is practically identical to the Phoenician script, which was known at the time, thus not precluding the possibility of fraud."- copied from Wikipedia

The lady who showed it to us told us that there used to be Irish living at this mountain and Israelites living there back from the time of Kind David in the Old Testament, but I have no idea how she knew that.  She was very old and hard to understand.  I'm thinking of the Book of Mormon and how we know that many people were lead out of the Old World at various times to come here to the New World.  She has invited a lot of scholars to come and see it and one who was knowledgeable of Israelite things said, "There ought to be an alter on this mountain somewhere."    They looked and eventually found it- only about a foot high with more of this ancient writing inscribed on top.  However as I said she was old and hard to understand, and though we climbed the whole mountain and looked, we would have never found it without someone to show it to us.   Too bad.  Here's pic's.

Driving in

Weird bug

Hiking up a short distance

And we're there!  The rock has rolled some, so the writing used to go up and down like columns.  Also you can see someone scratched out the top line.

Me and my big hat.

D&S off on their own

Sometimes I can't believe these are my kids!

Heading up to try to find the alter.

Looking out over the valley about halfway up

There were some walls built up here on the mountain.  Were they lookouts?  Karisa believes it was the Irish.

We saw lots of trains pass by.  This is in Los Lunas only about 1/2 hour from Albuquerque.  Isn't the valley beautiful?  For a desert?

Some people stay on the path, and others take the dangerous way- while holding a baby.

She's a trooper

Can you see the home D & S found for themselves?
This activity was a fun day of hiking and Pat was able to come along and the kids just memorized the 10 commandments so it fit perfect!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Food experiments

I sometimes think I should just start a food only blog... I love experimenting with food!  If you think I sound kinda like a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with my love of sinful food vs healthy food, well you're right.  I am split in half, both sides fighting against one another.  One side is evil, but I'm so good at it, it's hard to give up.  Actually my goal is just to control it to very limited amounts.

Pat made the most delicious green chili alfredo sauce!  Creamy and SPICY!  It's a New Mexico thing.

These are Polish cookies called Kolachki.  The cookie is the strangest cookie recipe ever (yeast, sour cream) and it tasted like pie crust but light and buttery,and then topped with jam and powdered sugar frosting.  It is heaven.  I made some with just cinnamon and sugar and they are so sinfully good!  Seriously, you can't eat just one.

I love turkey burgers way more than regular ones because meat grosses me out so much.  Pat doesn't, but after I made these he said that was the best turkey burger he'd ever had.  We hardly ever go out to eat, and there's no place to order in where we live so we've gotten good at cooking for ourselves.  Our favorite burgers, when we really want to splurge, are topped with bacon and a fried egg with a mostly runny yolk, and everything else you like on burgers. 

Sprouted bread, tuna, and home grown sprouts on top.  Great lunch!

This is a recipe from The Pioneer Woman Cooks blog.  Eggplant and tomato pizza (mozz cheese/no sauce).  I used my french bread recipe for the crust and it couldn't have been more perfect- probably the best pizza I've ever made!

You know you're in NM...  This is brown rice with chicken gravy which has nothing to do with NM, but on top, the wee bit of roasted green chili- has everything to do with NM.   I laughed when I saw that I had made my lunch up this way.  The hotter it is, the better it is for you!  In NM at this time of year, outside of every grocery store, they are roasting green chili's and the smell fills the air.  It's lovely.  People buy them by the sack- and it's not a small sack! 

Pat said to surprise him for his birthday, so knowing he loves pumpkin pie, I made this creamy take on pumpkin pie.  It was just okay, not a keeper, but it was fun to make.

Cute Sunday dress

I tried to get some pictures of this cute Sunday dress from Aunt Steph many times and finally succeeded! The one at the map is before church, and the others are after church playing in the rocks. It's been turning cold and we'll miss perfectly sunny days like these!