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I Am... Mama and Writer

First Mama.  Then Writer.  Though, of late, the latter has consumed a great deal of time as I work to get things in order to potentially be ...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

On The Personal Front

Dad Gollihugh mentioned that he thought I was not posting nearly enough about the grandkids. Well, he's probably right. I apologize for making it difficult to find the personal stuff. If you come here to read what I have to say about our family, you will certainly miss it if you don't look beyond the first post. I'm purposefully sort of burying these posts "after" the political ones. Not because I want to hide my family, but rather because I'm trying to make the things that will effect my family (especially in the long-run) easier for anyone who wanders this way to view.

So... what's new? Well... and this may seem pretty random to most of you, but I want to apologize to my sister-in-law: Anni, I'm sorry. I really am sorry.

In other news...

Wow... this little girl is basically walking, but a scardy-cat. Jess told me a few nights ago that she ran across the bottom of the bed (feet on the floor, hands on the bed). This was not news to me, but it was the first time he saw it for himself. Now he believes me! So, yes, she is basically running as well as walking. She's starting to test out her "hands free" balancing more and more, but she's still a scardy-cat even in that respect. It's really funny to see her knowingly LET GO and then either grab whatever she just release in a sort of "I'm FALLING" snatch OR plop herself onto her butt.

She's still nursing strong. I hope it will continue into the future. She's also eating a lot more from the things we eat for meals. Unfortunately, much is off limits because our foods often have nuts, but she LOVES what I allow her. Her favorites still seem to be butternut squash (with salt and butter), figs (we were treated to some of these lucious fruits by Mom and Dad Gollihugh! YUM!!!), and bananas. But she's tried basically everything I eat now. And she has LOVED almost all of it.

While our family was visiting, Tea started making a LOT more jokes! She has the funniest, cutest little "I'm going to get you" laugh! Her Pop and Mema got to experience her sweet funny little laugh. What a pleasure!

Tea's jokes are often involve 'bothering' her sisters. For instance, during our family's time here (and for a few nights since their departure) our girls have slept in Mama and Daddy's room. Ria has been on the floor on sleeping bags. Well, Tea has crawled over there (when Ria was awake AND not) giggling her little "I'm going to get you" laugh and then head-butted or otherwise 'tormented' Ria. When Ria was awake, Ria intereacted a little with Tea and they ended up going back and forth in some silly giggles. When Ria was asleep, Tea would try a few times to get Ria to interact and then give up and try Kat (who was sleeping in the crib in our room). It was REALLY funny to watch!

Oh, and the head-butting thing comes from Jessie's play with Tea. He'll push her over with his head when they play. Or he'll rub his bristly short hair on her belly to make her laugh. So, of course, she does the same thing when trying to play with others. Though, I don't think I've seen her specifically try to rub her head on anyone's belly yet. That'll be a hoot, though, if she does!

Have I mentioned that she pesters me to "do school"? I love it, of course. She is determined to read. I asked her a while ago if she wanted to, but she wasn't into it. Probably nigh on a year ago now and she didn't want to, but more recently, she told me she DID want to learn how to read. So we started in the book I've mentioned before (How to Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons) and she's currently on lesson 17. Can you believe it? She's amazing! The going is slow because we are working for mastery, but she's excited about it every day. What a joy!

Because Ria decided she wanted to start Spanish, Kat is totally into it, too. (Of course!) So, when we "do Math" we work on Spanish counting as well. Kat basically has it down (1-5, which are the numbers we've been REALLY focusing on... because I want to know that she understands that each number represents a value, not just counting numbers) and almost through ten (in Spanish, she can count to 20 in English). Amazing. (But of course I would think so!)

Kat is WAY into coloring. She's in a monochromatic phase, for the most part. She'll color everything, or almost everything, on one side of the page in one color. While she doesn't strive to stay inside the lines of the internal parts of a picture, she DOES almost stay inside the outer lines of any given part of the whole! I've also noticed, when she does use more than one color, that she has a natural tendency to choose complimentary colors (opposites on the color wheel that heighten the intensity of the other when placed next to one another... just in case you weren't sure). What an eye on my Kat, right?!

Kat LOVED having our family visit!! She especially loved the trips to the beach with everyone. It was such a pleasure to see her loving her Mema and Pop SO well! She was very sad that they left and has asked much about them since their departure on Wednesday afternoon.

Our eldest daughter was DISTRAUGHT when she realized her cousins were gone and not coming back, which happened earlier than initially planned! She cried inconsolably for quite a while. It was heart-breaking for Jess and me. So, she obviously loved having her cousins here to visit. It was a pleasure to see how much they really did seem to enjoy one another!

Ria also loved having her Pop and Mema visit. When Jess asked (the first time) what her favorite part of having them visit was she thought for a few moments and then replied, "Holding their hands." Of course, Kat's response was the same. ^_^ We loved having all of the Gollihughs here to visit for the short time they were. We hope it will happen again much sooner than later!

Subsequent questions about what the favorite part of the visit was brought up answers like, "Going to the beach," and "Playing the game," and "Going to eat at Daddy's work". The last one Mema and Pop treated us to the first night they made their presence known.

Ria is regularly working on piano. She's still reading lots. Of all the things she does when she doesn't HAVE to do something, reading is the most regularly occurring activity. For "school" she is almost through all of the Narnia series. She's finished the Little House on the Prairie series, but I just found a book by Laura's daughter that Ria will read soon. She's read the first 3 Nancy Drew books and the first 2 of the Mandie books (really great Historical Fiction). Unfortunately, Ria is still resistant about "doing school", but thankfully she really gets into most of it once she's done complaining.

Ria will be starting History, Science, and officially doing Spanish once we receive the items for those subjects (I do have to order them first... on the TO DO for Monday). I'll be using my allowance. That use of "my money" is totally worth it, of course, but the selfish part of me does wish I could spend it on something for me (like save it to make a trip to VA... which, Mema and Pop generously contributed to!!! or something JUST for me). I have been feeling more okay with 'always' spending what was intended as allowance for me on things for the girls and/or our family because I think it's just my time for that. Ya know? After I "cover" the expense of those, (it's going to take a little more than 2 months of "my allowance" to pay for the items mentioned above) I'll purchase a Language Arts and Character Development curriculum... hopefully by December. That'll be another 2 months of allowance. *sigh* If only the taxes we paid "for" public schools we don't use could be kept in out own account. It would be that much easier to fund this difficult enterprise (homeschooling). I would surely give it up (especially with all the difficulty I've faced with Ria) if I didn't know Father directed our path in this as well as other difficult choices.

Talk about a happy guy! He was super happy to have his family visit. Sad his sister left early, but still enjoyed his Mom and Dad's presence. He was supportive and comforted me through the difficulty of an early departure, which was a tremendous blessing to me. He's a good man.

Did you know Jess was, basically, working as the General Manager for his restaurant? Yep. And he did a good job at it. Awesome, right? It was two weeks worth (three Sundays) of being the General Manager and he liked it, from all I could tell. It was a little more stress, but he handled it admirably.

Did you know Jess teaches a monthly Food Storage Food Preparation classes for my Ward? Yep. He's taught at least 6 classes now. I think it's been more, actually. His classes have been really well attended for the past couple/few months. The attendance has sort of peaked because members of the Stake have been attending. This last Tuesday, he had about 20 and the time before it was around 30 attendees. Awesome, right? He loves it. When he talks about it, he says that he hopes he is able to reinforce the importance of having AND using food storage. I'm so glad!

I'm still feeling a lot of urgency to share the political stuff I learn about and know. Thus the messages easiest to access here, on my blog.

We've officially joined the main homeschooling group for our area, a homeschooling PE group, and a few Yahoo!Groups for homeschooling families (specifically LDS, I think). There's another local Yahoo!Group I can now join (since I know some of the members) and will do so soon. I also hope to and expect to sort of form another homeschool group that will not meet at a Church and will not be focused on Christianity. I learned that there is a desire among a number of families in the area (larger than my specific location) and that they would be willing to drive for it. Just hoping/trying to answer a need. Thankfully I will not be doing it alone. One of the homeschooling Mamas in my Ward will be working on it with me. WHAT a blessing!

I'm still trying to write as much as possible. Not able to do it much, but still trying.

Most of my "extra" time is spent reading ahead of Ria. I've got a few series lines up for her after she finishes those she's working on now. I received a few suggestions from my sister, Evelyn, that I wanted to pass along because they are particularly wonderful books. Goose Girl and Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale. I also did read Princess Academy and they are ALL wonderful. There are good messages and they are not "too heavy" either.

The house is not a total disaster area. I'm especially noting this because it has tended to be a total disaster after family visits. I'm SUPER happy it is not one right now and hopeful that I'll have it back to the sort of medium I've felt happy with lately. I'm still behind on dishes, but that tends to be the bane of my homemaking existence. ;) We all have one, I'm sure.

I'm often tired, but not in the way I used to be. I think that has a lot to do with SCD and trying to eat healthier these last 3+ months. I'm almost to 4, I think. My guts seem much healthier. WHAT a blessing!


Katy said...

I, for one, DIDN'T know Jess was teaching a food storage class. That is way cool!

vicki said...

love the news. Thank you.
When you were about three you astounded me in some craft work you were doing in RS nursery-a homemaking day when we had midweek morning mtgs. I know I still have the work...someplace. right now all I remember about it was the symmetry. It was a very symmetrical piece...especially compared to the your fellow "nursery' kids. Many were older than you, too. the 'nursery' was for 18 mos thru pre-k (as the Kindergarten kids were at school.)

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