Wednesday, March 26, 2008


It's been awhile, but we've had some doozies that I just had to write down.
  • I needed to get the capsule form of Nyquil. My trip to Sam's was futile since they had the liquid and the capsules of Day and Night together (we don't use day). At checkout (I bought milk), Z tells the clerk that she needs to make sure to have the other medicine in stock next time. And to "tell your parents". I think he meant her bosses.
  • A neighbor asked Z what he was doing as he approached them to say hello. He responded with a casual, "Still learning."
  • At a restaurant we frequent, the waitress asked us how many in our party. Z replied, "Still three."

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Mother Bear

Yesterday I took Z to the park to join families for a day of fun. It was our first homeschool park day. I had high hopes of connecting with other mothers with similar aged kids as well as gleaning knowledge from the more experienced ones. Yesterday, I was taught a lesson. Several, in fact.

Homeschoolers are not all nice. Yes, there are bullies everywhere. You can imagine my ire, as I see my little 4 year old coming to me in tears. I had been watching 2 older boys interact with him. From my vantage point, it appeared they found him funny, perhaps even mocking him and his mannerisms. My sweet friendly son came to me pouring his eyes out, and I scooped him up and took off after those boys.

The Mother Bear was unleashed.

I confronted the boys, wanting to know their ages and names. They were 9 and 11. The older was more forthcoming and even a bit more apologetic. The younger was not. Smug. Smirking. It was all a big joke to him. Unremorseful. Even lied to me about his name when it was perfectly obvious I knew he was a homeschooler and that his mother was one of the circle of women about 150 feet away.

How dare they ruin his first park day! Older boys picking on a small 4 year old! It burns me. It burns me that they would do this to such a tender soul who tries to make friends wherever he goes. I worry about what lesson he has unfortunately learned from this and how it will shape him. My only consolation is his resiliency and that sunny nature and generous heart.

The last person to look for a fight, I was not about to let the boys' deeds go unnoticed. I made sure to find out who their mothers were and let them know what had happened. One mother acted with dismay. The other first pointed out that my son had been throwing sand early when her baby was around. Then seemed to collect herself to say her older boy should not have acted as he had. Guess which son was hers?

A little girl came up to me later to tell Z and I that the boys were "bullies". Her words. She explained to my son that they didn't like little boys and that Z should stay away from them. How sad that this girl should know this. Apparently Z wasn't the first to suffer at their hands.

Now, I'm not idealistic enough to believe the boys will have mended their ways. Especially not the dumb smirking smart ass. But they know I will be watching them and they know that any false move on their part will be addressed, if only by me.

My Z does not want to go back to that park. He now associates that park with the boys. It doesn't matter that he played another hour there with a much nicer child. That negative experience has marred him.

We are going to try another park day at another park. I don't know if those boys will be there. If we do run into more bullies, I will ashew the homeschool park days. It's not worth my son's spirit.

My job is to protect him. And I failed him.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

I Found it!

I found it! Now, the question is...What the hell is it?

No, it's not a noodle.

It's about 5 inches long.

It is kind of squishy.

You hold it in your hand with your fingers.

It is a must have if you have cramping.


Does this image give you a better clue?

I found this at the Marukai Superstore which is similar to the 99c stores (except items may cost more). This was $1.50. I don't read (or speak) Japanese, but I can see. This is used to help add bulk to whatever you are gripping so you can hold things easier (and it's non-slip). Great for people with arthritis or other fine motor problems. Me being me, I'm always on the lookout for stuff like this. I find it especially great for crochet hooks. It works so much better than the puny things they sell in the craft stores and pencil grippers. Just thought I'd share.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Unfinished and Finished

So, I finally got around to taking photos of my current FO's and UFO's. Finally got around to uploading those photos. Let me preface by saying I suck at following patterns. Most of what you see (and will see) starts with a pattern and takes a left at Albuquerque. Why? Because I can't figure out the instructions so I wing it from there. So, that being said, here we go!

Baby Bucket (or Sun) Hat

I used the Cross Bucket Hat pattern to get me started (using a smaller hook for the smaller head and 4 ply cotton). Then I took flight.

bag in mid work looked like a shawl or rug

If you make this and it doesn't look like mine, that's because it's been altered slightly from the original pattern. I did warn you!

I think it will be part of a bag. Just haven't finalized that thought yet. I used cotton 4 ply and I hook.

This is the same pattern I used on my trip to Hawaii. I do love it! It's great to start a tote off with. Once I get to the mesh section, I kinda do my own thing. This one is finished with 6 rows of hdc white and 6 of yellow. Then the handles are about 48 rows of hdc.

Okay. That's it for now. I am STILL working on a knit scarf. It's too ugly to post now but when I am done and have doctored it up, I will.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Big Britches and Little Butts

Z's gotten such an attitude lately. Yes, we are talking about the same kid here! He thinks he knows it all and tries to correct EVERYONE!! Even perfect strangers. It sounds funny, but it is soooo not. Especially when he asks a question and as you are telling him the answer, he is telling you that you are wrong and he doesn't even know the right answer!! It drives me batty, although I have yet to go grey or pull my hair out.

The kid began recently to regress. Doing all the stuff kids do when they are much younger. Like taking the marker while we are in the car and drawing on his bag (and getting it on his lips). The blue lips we notice just as we are pulling into the parking lot of a restaurant. (So hard not to laugh.) Like opening the paint container on my desk (which he knows better not to touch) which is next to my computer. (I know. Dumb me...but I didn't think he would open it!) Like picking off the googly eyes that we just glued on and saying he did not know picking at them would make them fall off. And while I may have accepted that explanation if only one eye came off, but the kid took off two eyes! That one was not flying.

I had to drag him off during Patches today to have a conversation. He was in such a snotty mood. I asked him if he wanted me to cut his bumble bee wings out for him or if he would like to do it. He just stared at me and had no reply. Then gets in a tizzy about how he has to do the gluing and painting and getting all huffy if I tried to help.

Part of the problem is I'm a softee. I'm not a hitter or a yeller. I'm an occasional time-outter. And I try not to make threats. In my husband's eyes, I am way too soft. And I'd disagree, but Hell, even the dog knows that. Lucy will lick me crazy when she wants a treat. She has trained me well. And now Z is trying too. Thank goodness it's all subconscious. I would be a goner if he really put his mind to it.

I can't tell you how glad I am he is a boy. I don't think I could handle a girl's attitude. At 4 he's got the skills to make my world spin and smoke rise from my ears. The thought of him in 11 years and the battles ahead are enough to make me grab a glass of wine, nevermind the time of day.

Cheers. Here's to parenthood and the neverending battle for dominance. May I win.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

March (so far)

Wow! Where have the days gone? It's the middle of March and my first blog for this month.

I've been actively reading all the pertinent posts from my homeschooling groups. An earlier case court had a negative outcome geared towards homeschoolers. For all you not in the know, the judge basically ruled that kids should not be homeschooled unless their parent was a qualified teacher. Now, this has many of us up in arms and ready to do battle. No offense to teachers, but I am edjumacated to teach my kid. Just because I don't have a teaching degree does not mean I am not qualified. And there are a multitude of things I would rather my child not learn from other children in "school". So, I've been busy reading, taking notes, and doing what I can to support the right to homeschool (although we have yet to officially homeschool).

We also added a class to our normal routine. It's called "Patches". It's a homeschooling "class" for the preschool aged. We've meet twice now (every Thursday for 12 weeks). The classes are approximately 1 1/2 hours long. We have a story and do some activity. The first class involved sewing a banner. We earned a sewing patch for that and attached it to the banner. The second class involved planting gladiola bulbs, which earned us a gardening patch. So for each class we earn a patch...hence the name "Patches" (but I didn't have to explain that part, now did I?!). Tomorrow's topic is insects. I've been asked to read a story so I am thinking Eric Carle. It will either be "The very hungry caterpillar" or "The very quiet Cricket".

March seems to be the month for births. Aside from a very special little boy being born a few days ago...we're attended 2 birthday parties and sent a gift to Z's cousin for his birthday. And come to think about it...all were boys! Anyhoo, somewhere along the way Z caught a cold. I was hoping all the hacking and coughing and snot was allergy related since I had similar symptoms and neither one of us had a fever. A trip to the doctor yesterday just to check proved me wrong. Z had a virus. Apparently, so did I. It hit me later that day. It must have hit the hubby too since he came home feeling like crap. (I think it was more psychosomatic since his all occurred after finding out from me that Z was sick and him having shared a drink the day before.) Daddy went to work yesterday and came home early. Sick daddy's get wiped out and had to stay in bed and rest. Z and I are on the mend. Dad went to work today but still feels like crap.

I kept Z out of preschool today. He was still coughing a little and had a sneezy snot so I felt it best to go infect strangers. I took him to the aquarium instead. There were hoards of kids and adults, but it actually wasn't too bad. I picked up a travel guide and found out we could ride the shuttle bus for free. We got on the Passport and rode to the Queen Mary. We walked over to see the Russian submarine. Inside the gift shop you could sit down and watch a short movie simulating events which might have taken place with the 300 foot sub. We even got a souvenir penny that cost me $0.51, but Z lost it when he got distracted by ants. The bus took us back to the aquarium, where we had our lunch, fed the birds, and went back to look at more sea life. It was a pretty nice day.

What else has been going on? Hmm...water pipe had a leak one Saturday that needed fixing ASAP. The plumber cut a nice hole on the outside of my house to fix it. At least it's somewhat discrete. It's on the ceiling as you go up the stairs to my home. We also had a homeowners association meeting the following Sunday. That usually lasts about 2 hours.

I've been going to my knitting meetings too on Wednesday nights and Sunday afternoon in Torrance when time permits. I've been doing my crocheting and knitting here and there. I promise to post more UFO's later (wish I had some FO's to post but that's my problem...too many great projects and not enough hands to finish them all!).

My house is looking trashed. I've got piles of stuff everywhere. Piles of educational material. Piles of crafts for Z. Piles of crafts for me. Regular old housekeeping piles...the bills and ads. Toys. Gifts for Easter. Eeeeek! At least the clothes are clean and the toilets and sink are too!! Small favors.