Sunday, November 25, 2007

into the holiday season

For our readers, I hope your Thanksgiving celebration was filled with joy and peace. And that you had Thanksgiving dinner several times afterwards as well. I almost enjoy the left-over meals more the second and third time!

Our family spent the several days that I had off from work doing very little. The children continued to build their houses, and got involved with another craft activity (they are now making toy cars). Doesn't seem too out of sorts for them to be constantly involved in making something. :)

I am still continuing to plug away at some finishing work for school. The past two months I have taken online classes through National University, and have spent most of my time posting on discussion boards, reading books, and writing papers. This next month, December, will be my final class where I get to choose the topic I want to explore in education, and write a final paper on my research and observations as it pertains to the classroom. I am choosing the topic of multiple intelligences to research but haven't decided on what question of it that I want to address. I have a day or two to decide.

For the next week or so we will spend some time making Christmas cards. This personally is one of my favorite activities to do with the children. We have already decided on a design, and are thinking about the kind of message we want the card to say. I love involving the children and working with them on sending out holiday greetings. I did a small research on the Christmas card and it's origin. The first Commercial cards were commissioned by Sir Henry Cole in London around 1843, but the original Christmas card started three years earlier in 1840, when Queen Victoria's Royal Family sent cards out to share personal events of the year. It seems the purpose of the card has not changes that much over all these years. Ildi asked the question concerning why we send cards in the first place. Here are some of the reasons I send Christmas cards.

1. I like to make them.
2. I like to work on things with the children.
3. I want others to know that I am thinking about them during the holiday season time. (that really should be number one)
4. It is a way to bring cheer to others.

Each year the children and I look forward to making "this year's" card. I have been keeping one from each year for the last few years so that when the children are grown, they can take the ones we made while they were at home.

Side story...Macy has broken the family record for the most amount of teeth lost in a week, and a day. The record stands now at three per week, and two in one day. I pulled two of them out just a few hours ago. And she was brave!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

benefit in the mess

There is a house being build right next to the one we rent. In the area, construction has gone on since we have gotten here. Sometimes, we get a little tired of the noise during the day. And, the mess next door with sawdust, nails and lumber is crazy. But, there in a benefit in the mess.

Today I let the children dig in the haul-away-dumpster for wood.


After they scavenged for the wood they wanted and the nails they needed, they proceeded to build the items that they planned on making. The boys and Macy decided to make houses.


Amory (the chicken lady) decided to start on her chick brooder. :)


Tomorrow they are going to finish up on the building projects. Hopefully the guys who are working next door will leave lots of wood.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

i never thought this would happen

A few months ago I started this blog for a couple of reasons. My first intention was to create a site that would give friends and family a chance to see where we were going, and what we were doing, since we were moving so far away. Secondly, I wanted to get something up and running so that I could encourage Ildi to post and "speak" to the vast amounts of women that call for advice on mothering things. But, there now is a third reason, and why I am continuing to post. I never thought that I would enjoy writing the way that I do when posting. Sort of letter writing, sort of journal writing, sort of informative writing, and the list goes on. Years ago, and throughout my life, I have started, and stopped, many journals. There was something good in writing down what I was thinking. This place gives the format for writing what I think, and writing for an audience as well. Which brings me to the newest part of this whole process of getting involved with blogging.

For years I have heard that I should write a book. From friends it has been books about parenting. From teachers and colleagues it has been that I should write about classroom teaching. So, last week I started a new blog that deals with classroom issues. It is located here http://theartroomarchives.blogspot.com/ and will mostly deal with teaching practices that work. The posts might not be the most popular methodologies that are being taught in education classes, but they are tried and true methods that have worked, or are working in my classes still today. Please stop by and leave me a comment or two. If you don't agree with me on a post, I can handle the criticism!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

recent photos

For those who have been asking to see updated pictures...here you go. These were taken at Bur Mills Park in the city of Greensboro. We have been attending a church that meets there at the community center and spend time at the park after the meal together. It is a really pretty place and full of geographical history. There is no need to post pictures of Ildi or me because we still look the same as several years ago. If you forget what we look like, just pull out an old picture, put a few pounds on, grey the hair only slightly, and there we are!






Saturday, November 10, 2007

in addition

I went on the dashboard and read a post that Blogger was having a problem with video uploading. Whew! I am not crazy.

AS well, the last few mornings it has been around 32-37 degrees in the morning when I leave for school. Wow, I didn't think it was going to be cold until December or January. For those friends who live in Ohio...don't poke fun at us, we did JUST move from California three months ago. It's going to take a little while for our skin to thicken up. Ildi bought me a pair or fleece-lined jeans. They are great to wear. And Friday, I wore long underwear under my pants to school. I was warm all day. Secretly I am enjoying the colder weather. shhhhhh....

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

without too much of a history lesson...

For those who have never heard of being "plain", it's sort of the cross between Amish and Mennonite in dress, without the all of the religious affiliation, even though much of the doctrinal beliefs are the same. From what I understand, which is quite limited mind you, is that the Anabaptist were a group of people that remained outside the mainstream of the Reformation. (middle 1500's) They were labeled the lunatic fringe. The label Anabaptist applies to the movements today known as the Amish and Mennonite communities. We have met several families who embrace the plain movement and have become friends. The Farmer's Market we attend in Greensboro has a couple of families that dress plain.

Last weekend we visited a Plain church. Some of the people we buy goods from at the market invited us to a special service they were having. It was a great day and a wonderful experience for us and the children. Since it was an hour and one-half away, we woke early to get there on time for worship. Worship is the whole service including the meal afterwards. Almost all the people where dressed plainly. It made the way we dress look like a fashion statement. The men sat on one side of the meeting hall, the women on the other. Boys with dad's, girls with mom's. After the (a capello?) singing time, a man from Massachusetts preached. When the service part of the meeting was over, we all sat down to a meal together.

After worship we were invited to go to our friend's house to stay for the afternoon. The children were allowed to help with the chores. The chores...milking the goats! They loved it.

The family we visited is renting the farm now until this winter. The beginning of the year, several families will go in together to purchase the land for personal and church purposes. Right now they are only paying $700 monthly for a house and 150 acres to farm on. Sort of makes you want to move to North Carolina huh? This plot of land is on the border of NC and Virginia right along the Dann River.