A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Cats, Picture Days, Shriners, and More

After 4 weeks of all the kids being in school, I can happily report that we're falling into our new routine nicely.  Mornings run smoothly, after school snacks and homework are happening, and so far, we haven't had a forgotten lunch box or an epic melt down (me or the kids). 

The drive out to the younger kids' school is nice, but I did have to sit in traffic one morning after dropping them off because a crash closed the road. 

I like to pull an activity out to have ready for Katie to play with when she starts wandering around looking lost while Hannah is doing her homework.  This was lacing cards. 

Jack working on computer homework.

I did some work on the school room and changed the direction of my desk, moved some stuff around, threw out a lot of paper trash that we didn't need any more.  I'm slowly getting rid of homeschool stuff we no longer need, and am thinning down some of our other books, as well.  It's progress, but I still have a long way to go. 

I got the wild urge to decorate over a week ago, and now the house is looking a bit more autumn-y.  There's a leaf garland on the piano, and a scarecrow family on the mantle, and some other little touches, too. 

Still using up the cupcake papers.  I've been throwing all sorts of random things in the muffins I've been making.  Hemp hearts are an easy addition that adds great nutrition without significantly altering the flavor. 

I think my favorite are the apricot muffins, but the banana nut ones were pretty good, too.  I've also used blueberries or craisins. 

It looks like Halloween, but it's actually picture day.  Since the seniors have Senior Pictures in the yearbook, they've taken to dressing weird for regular picture day. 

Jezabel, one of my current favorite kitties at SPCA.  She was unhappy in a small habitat, but since moving to a larger room, she's become quite the love bug! 

And Leo, another favorite.  He plays with enthusiasm, and had to take a little rest during our session, lol. 

Can you believe this Grumpy Cat lookalike is a feral?  It came into the feral spay and neuter clinic last weekend.  Some of the cats are pretty rough looking--you can tell they've had a hard life.  But some of them are soft and pretty. 

Speaking of cats...  There's my sweet Wheelie.  For those who don't know, he adopted us, many years ago.  He just kept showing up in our yard until we accepted that he was our cat.  Well, lately, it seems that he's been spending a good deal of time at one of the neighbors down the street. 

So it was very nice to have him come home and grace us with his presence for a few hours. 

This paper I found in Katie's backpack cracked me up.  She's "bin learning" quite a bit in school. 

Speaking of school, the younger kids had picture day, too.  Which I forgot about until the night before.  Jack's not big on button shirts, and frankly, it never seemed like an important issue, since he has a largely casual life.  Some frantic digging produced this shirt that used to be Eli's, and it was perfect.  Except the school insisted that he put a tie on for the picture.  And the tie in his backpack had stripes.  I'm expecting the pictures to be cringey.  I may just have him wear the shirt again and take my own. 

Pretty sure she would look cute in a burlap bag. 

As would Miss Hannah. 

Katie, making her spelling words with our phonics blocks.

Katie had been telling me every day, "I don't have any homework," and since she's my 9th kid, I had not actually bothered to open her backpack up to this point.  However, the teacher mentioned "in their homework packet" on the class app, so I thought I'd better investigate.  Turns out, she has had homework, the whole time.  And she's been telling her teacher every day, "Oh, I didn't do that last night."  Sigh.  Not sure where the disconnect is in her little mind.  I don't think it was malicious avoidance of school work, but I'm not coming up with a better explanation, either.  So, no Mother of the Year award for me this year. 

Paul and I spent a morning at Green Acres and Lowe's, oogling plants and having ideas.  We came home with a few things, including this Venus Fly Trap, which is already doing it's job. 

Spelling her spelling words with word tiles.  No words next week because of the big field trip (more about that later) but I'll be pulling out the sidewalk chalk for her words next month. 

The girls will be getting new legs.  The first step in that parade is to have the girls see the doctor so he can order new legs.  This was that appointment. 

Miss Katie even got an x-ray.  My poor television-deprived children found the Sesame Street playing in the imaging waiting area fascinating.

Done at Shriners and headed off to school! 

Boy asked Brianna to homecoming. 

The kids are loving the whole After School Snack idea.  I should have started this years ago. 

In fact, the one day that I wasn't able to make anything, Josiah stepped up and made these pumpkin spice cupcakes with pumpkin patch sprinkles. 

On the volunteering front, I've now hit over 75 hours, with more than 35 of those hours in September.  I don't think I'll have any problem hitting my goal of 100 hours in 2017.  I'm moving past the "everything is new and interesting" stage and starting to discover which opportunities I enjoy the most. 

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Random Bits

This is basically a photo dump from the last few weeks.  Now that I'm not homeschooling, I really don't have enough kid pictures to share a weekly wrap up type post each week.

A couple days after the eclipse, I had to restart my iPad, and I laughed because the bite of the apple reminded me of the bite that the moon took out of the sun at the beginning of the eclipse.

Before school orientation, I put Hannah's hair in Curlformers.

She had pretty curls, but trying to keep them out of her face with a stretchy headband didn't work, so I ended up putting pony tails in.  Neither one of my girls can wear headbands, unfortunately.

Brianna was part of another swear-in ceremony, this one at the Friday night football game at her school.

It would have been even more meaningful had not the guy mispronounced her name.

Someone had a birthday.  Sweet 16.  And I remembered to buy candles!

Which he flicked out.

I introduced the kids to the wonders of English muffin pizzas.  We had fun making them, and they liked eating them, too.

I used to make them with the big kids, years and years ago, but it's been a very long time since we've had them.

Brianna made "pake."  That's pie and cake combined.

Speaking of baking, I opened the second to last package of cupcake papers today!  Pretty soon I'll have met my goal, and I'll have to start making cookies, instead, so I can start using up our 6 million sprinkles.

I'm keeping busy while the kids are at school.  Baking, volunteering here and there, reading...

And even a bit of sewing!

I finally finished this blanket for Project Linus.  I have another one I need to get done, and then I'm going to drop them off together.

School is going well for these guys, and for the teens, for the moment, which is awesome.  I'm sure we'll have our issues, but it's smooth sailing at present.

I'm calling this the Katie step.  Miss K jumped off the wall the other day and went SPLAT!  Now there's a highly visible opening in the wall that's perhaps a bit more accessible.  I don't know if they made it just because of her or not, but the timing seems like a pretty strong coincidence to me.

I'm volunteering at a local animal organization, and got to see baby flamingos the other day.  I knew the adults got their color from their diet (shrimp), but I didn't realize the babies were gray.  They're cute, and getting really big.

And I'm still enjoying helping out at the SPCA.  I really feel like I've learned a lot from working recovery in the feral cat spay and neuter clinic.

Anesthetized cats are kind of hilarious.

After playing Where's Waldo? for a bit, I caught a glimpse of Sam in some recently posted pictures on Facebook.  Does my heart good to see my boy.

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