Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Tentative School Plan 2012-13


I can't believe school starts in a week. All of Rush and Tovah's supplies are purchased and packed into new bags. They each have 2 new pairs of jeans to get started until I can take time to inventory what they actually need. Rush has new shoes and Tovah's complaining about her toes being squished in the perfectly good shoes I bought at the beginning of summer. We've already gotten through the first week of sports practices including a Cross-Country retreat for Arin with the high school team. Rush got his driver's license. Rush's Eagle Project should be done tonight. Whew! It's been a busy week...

Now I need to figure out the boys' homeschool plan for the year. They will not be using the public-school-at-home program this year so we'll have to pay for a private school to carry Arin and Isaac's transcripts since they are both high schoolers. That also changes the curriculum we might end up using.

Arin- 10th grade
World Geography- Passport Club at the Christian School, notebooking
US Government- Citzenship in the Community, Nation, and World Merit Badges; also a trip to NYC
and Washington DC over spring break
Teaching Textbooks Pre-Algebra
3 sports- Cross Country, Wrestling, Track

Isaac- 9th grade
World Geography- Passport Club at the Christian School, notebooking
Teaching Textbooks Algebra
Chess Club- club meetings, merit badge, and compete at 3 or more tournaments

Jonah- 7th grade
???  I guess he'll continue with Math-U-See, Pathways readers, and doing whatever science or history the other boys are doing. He's playing football this fall and would also like to go back to Chess Club

I'm going to look at what Kahn Academy offers for math and literature courses. The kids like video based learning and since we now have the bandwidth we might as well use the online offerings.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Knitting Catch-Up


I realized its been a year since I did a knitting update. Last year I got a lot of yarn for my birthday and its partly knit up but I added some projects to the queue...

The big project for the year was the Seasons Shawl (Spring). I finished it in February in time to give it to a friend for her birthday- I decided I am just not a shawl person; no matter how lacy and pretty, it still makes me feel like a babushka. My friend, she's a shawl person and always cold so it worked out well. I am now knitting myself a long, lacy scarf with the leftovers plus an extra skein of the main rose pink color. Hopefully it'll make me feel cheery in the cold, gray winter.

I blocked it on the bed in the trailer and then took it outside for pictures.

Just looking at the colors makes me happy.

I finished the opossum socks. MaryLinda brought the 2 skeins back from New Zealand 2 years ago. It took me a long time to find a pattern that showcased both colors. This spiral heel is the start of the socks and caused a lot of cursing and throwing of yarn and knitting needles. I finally found extra yarn and larger needles and watched the youtube video over and over again until I got it. The second heel wasn't quite the ordeal of the first but still made me anxious. The yarn seems to want to felt but they are so warm and soft. I wish I had made them a little taller but I didn't want to run out of yarn.

The pattern is Double Heelix from Knitty Spring/ Summer 2011

After much reading online I decided to dye my wool with Wilton food dye in the crockpot rather than using Kool Aid. Kool Aid dyeing is pretty limited to reds and oranges, there are a lot more color choices with food dye and it seemed less work. Then I decided I wanted stripes... Our school and little league teams are all blue & gold.

This made me happy. I managed to twist it like a real yarn dyer.
Ready to knit

This is the yarn knit up in my first Crazy Ribs fingerless glove I only have one knit because it goes halfway down my forearm and I wasn't sure I wanted such long gloves. Now I either need to make the decision to keep it that long and knit the other one or frog it and start over. Its a silk merino blend and very soft and warm. They'll get lots of use for football, soccer, and baseball practices and games

This is some alpaca/ wool blend that I picked up at the knit shop in Lakewood. The colors are just right for my mom and I figured I had plenty of time to knit her a pair of Dragonfly Socks for her August birthday (I bought the yarn back in January, just before I finished the shawl).

I started these on the plane down to Disneyland and had to start 3 times because they just weren't playing nice. 10 days later I had about 2" knit. The first sock (knit on size US 1.5 needles) turned out too big so I knit the second sock on smaller needles (US 1) then frogged the first sock as I knit the third sock. I did work on them at Family Camp and managed to get one sock completed as we watched the Olympics. The second sock went more quickly but it was too hot to work on while we were in Idaho and Montana (and when you haven't showered and its 100-degrees you don't want any wool touching you anywhere). On my mom's birthday I had the cuff done of the second sock- that day I turned the heel and I finished them the day after her birthday. The lace pattern was easy to memorize and the repeats went quickly. I added an Eye of Partridge heel as the pattern was plain.  
Not pictured: I knit about a dozen mini socks for Christmas gifts and then knit a pair to give as a baby gift. I used up a lot of my leftover sock yarn and they were very cute with some chocolate and a candy cane in them. They have a provisional heel that was easy to add, you knit half a row in waste yarn, then in the main yarn, after you have finished the toe you go back and pick up the stitches on either side of the waste yarn and knit the heel. Each mini sock took me about 2 hours and I was slightly obsessed with making them
Still to come: I need to knit my second fingerless glove and finish my scarf, hopefully before school starts for me on September 25. Then I still have 2 skeins of sock yarn to knit for myself to replace a couple of pairs that are wearing out. I'd like to knit some fingerless gloves for a friend for Christmas and a pair of socks for another friend's birthday next August. We'll see how much I can get done with my school schedule- I got an email from the instructor and I can expect to have to read 250-300 pages a week... the first 2 books came from Amazon today and I'd like to be done with both before school starts (the first one is assigned to be done by the first day).

Friday, August 17, 2012

What!?!?! How Can Summer Be Almost Over?


All our travels and adventures are done and sports start on Monday. I can't believe summer is almost over but I kept telling people that our summer wouldn't really be until we could be home for 3 weeks and not preparing for the next thing (Disneyland, Family Camp, High Adventure...) The kids all start school after Labor Day, including the 3 homeschoolers, but I don't go back until the end of September so I still have a few weeks to get a project or two done, or not. I need to upload pictures to the blog and to get printed. If I am really ambitious I want to make a StoryBook of our California trip.

Some randomness at the end of summer:
  • It's hot here! We don't function in the heat the rest of the country considers normal- at 85 degrees we start getting heat advisories and warnings. It's supposed to reach 100 today but tomorrow will only be in the 80s. All we can do is lay in front of the fan or try and figure out where to go swimming.
  • Ryan finished his preceptor hours and went back to nights last night! He's going to be working a funky schedule until January but then his "regular" schedule will include a Friday night off and 5 days off in a row each pay period (2 weeks)
  • Rush got his Eagle Project approved and signed today so we can start the work. He's fencing the backyard of the parsonage at the Adna Church before the new pastor's family arrives. He's only got 10 days to complete the project but its too hot to start today, maybe tomorrow...
  • I can't wait for cooler weather, my hip is killing me and I need to wear my Dr. Martens but they look funny with shorts or capris. In the hot weather I live in Old Navy flip flops which are cool and easy to kick off and actually quite comfortable but my hip does not like them. One of these days I'm going to get some Dr. Marten sandals
  • I got a Samsung Galaxy IIS smart phone for graduation/ before our trip to California. I mostly use it to read my Bible and to Instagram. It is nice being able to Google search anywhere at anytime- for example on I-90 in the middle of Eastern Washington to settle an argument of who sang that song. Jonah had to show me how to answer it, it really is smarter-than-me.
  • I'm 70% of the way through the Bible in 90 Days. I started June 15 and kept current throughout our adventures. Actually its hardest to remember to read on the days we are at home. I've got the Bible on my new smarter-than-me phone and I can read in line, in the car, any time I'm waiting, etc. Today I started Daniel and after all the Books of Poetry and Prophecy I'm glad to be back in some narrative. Psalms and Proverbs are really hard to read straight through. But by the time I've read my Bible I don't have time for other reading or knitting (well, its hard to knit when its hot and sticky and even a bit of wool string across my hand is more wool than I want to be wearing)
  • I finished a pair of socks for my mom, the day after her birthday but definitely before she needed them so by my reckoning they were about 2 months early
  • I'm still on Week 1 of Couch to 5K. I found an app for my phone that times the running/ walking and that helps but I just haven't had time to be out of the house. I haven't given up, I'm still officially (at least in my mind) doing it and it does feel good each time I get out and run.
  • I have lost my water bottle and its killing me. I almost ordered this Contigo bottle off of Amazon this morning but I really like the one I lost and I'm not ready to concede defeat and replace a free water bottle. Tovah has one but I can't find hers either. I was really good all winter and carried it to school every day and drank water instead of an extra cup of coffee or a soda- I've found I have a lot fewer sinus headaches and my skin is less prone to break-outs if I am good about drinking my water
My missing water bottle, it has comfortable dents in it, a straw so I don't wear my water, and it was free (in exchange for 5 empty plastic bottles). It was last seen at Scouts 2 nights before we left for High Adventure.